Q&A: Partially Complete Manuscript and Submitting to More than One Agent

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Assalam-u-Alaikum,

I am interested in submitting my manuscript to the Open Call Muslim writer initiative that you are promoting.

Two questions:

1) My manuscript is only partially complete. Can I still submit?

2) Can I submit to more than one agent?

Jazakhallah, S.

Dear Readers: Can you answer this question? Please post your advice below.


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Amel is an experienced freelance writer, editor, and Arabic to English translator. She started the Muslim Writers Club as a means of sharing useful information about the art (and business) of writing.
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2 Comments

  1. As-salamu Alaykum, Dear S.,

    Here is some information that may help you:

    FICTION

    The vast majority of agents do not want to see unfinished manuscripts from first-time novelists. The following links explain this in more detail:

    Should I finish the manuscript of my novel before submitting to agents?

    Can I Query Before I Finish My Novel?

    Can I query an unfinished manuscript?

    No, Really. Finish the Manuscript.

    Some agents will make exceptions for public figures or established writers with a track-record of regular publication. Otherwise, I don’t think it is wise to send out your unfinished fiction manuscript.

    NON-FICTION

    If you are writing non-fiction, the rules are a little different. You can often submit a proposal along with 1 to 3 sample chapters, but there are benefits to completing non-fiction manuscripts as well, as outlined in this article:

    Should You Write the Whole Book?

    Agency guidelines are usually clear on what they want to see, so you should always read (and follow) the guidelines for best results.

    MULTIPLE AGENTS

    Submitting to multiple agents is generally fine so long as you keep the others informed (withdrawing your query or manuscript as appropriate) if you enter into a contract with one of them. The following article also provides valuable tips regarding how to best manage simultaneous queries:

    How Many Literary Agents Should You Query to have the Best Chance of Success?

    It is, however, frowned upon to query multiple agents at the same agency. Many agency guidelines specifically ask you not to do this.

    OPEN CALL FOR MUSLIM WRITERS

    For readers who would like to know more about the “open call” for Muslim writers, please visit this page.

    Amel – MWC Admin
    Muslim Writers Club recently posted…Want to Earn Passive Income as a Writer? Join Me on my New Money-Making Adventure!My Profile

  2. Salam again,

    I just took a look at the guidelines for Prospect Agency and noticed the following paragraph, which is typical for many agencies:

    Although we ask that you do not submit your manuscript to more than one agent at Prospect Agency simultaneously, we do not have an exclusive submissions policy and you are free to submit your work to other agencies in addition to Prospect Agency simultaneously. However, if you receive an offer of representation from another agency, we ask that you extend us the professional courtesy of letting us know before accepting.

    Amel – MWC Admin
    Muslim Writers Club recently posted…Q&A: Trouble Selling Manuscript for Islamic NovelMy Profile

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