Last week, I did some analytics on the Rate Your Story slush pile. (In case you missed that post, click here.)
I also made an offer, and got 14 responses, many of which went to SPAM mail. (Another reason why you should always politely follow up with agents and/or editors).
If you remember from last week, my offer was good to the first 15 respondents. That means there's one spot left for a critique from Miranda!! Who will be the lucky one to contact me first? You, I hope! Email Miranda if you'd like in on the offer.
But now, to today's post, I'd like to share a little more of what the slush pile looks like.
Rated 8-10 – approx. 10%
Rated a 5-7 – approx. 40%
Rated a 3-4 – approx. 29%
Rated a 2 - approx. 12%
Rated a 1 – approx. 2%
No Rating or Uncertain Rating: 7%
(P.S. Miranda tried very hard to make this a pretty chart/graphic in her new spreadsheet program, but gave up after 30 minutes. She cites the early morning hour as her downfall on this one.)
Now, let's remember a little bit about what the rating scale means:
1= a volunteer judge saw it as completely submission ready. That means that among nearly 800 manuscripts, our judges were ecstatic about exactly 15. If our judges were editors, that would probably translate to a "read-on-Wednesday, make-an-offer-by-Friday" sort of response.
5 = a volunteer judge saw it as better than average, but still needing work.
7 = a volunteer judge decided that your overall idea had merit (so don't throw it out!) but the MS needed a lot of revision.
10 = a volunteer judge decided that the current MS should be considered as practice and you'll need to re-envision a completely new story or concept.
Now that I've said that, remember:
Our volunteer judges, like agents and editors, are SUBJECTIVE.
You could submit the exact same manuscript twice to Rate Your Story and get two different ratings. I've had particular volunteer judges pass on rating manuscripts because they had a fear of the subject matter or had just read three other manuscripts about talking dogs, farm animals, etc. Don't take ratings from RYS personal. We're doing our best to help you (for free), and give you a dose of what's really out there.
Now, if you've scored a 5 or higher on any MS, go do a dance like this:
Your work is already better than average. It stands out. It's probably being read in its entirety if you're actively submitting it. Use that to fuel you during the revision process and get it from the "good" pile to the "GREAT" pile.
But dancing isn't just for 5s and better. If you've scored a 7 or higher on any MS, go do a dance, like this:
And if you've scored an 8, 9, or 10 on a MS, you also must do a dance, like this:
Since many editors and agents have a "no means no forever" policy, you often only get one shot in today's tough market. Our service has helped offer you insight on whether or not your MS is ready for that one shot. We're that friend holding your finger back from (or pushing it towards) the send button.
And, when you get those offers, we're here, dancing with you!
(Oddly, this is what Miranda and the RYS crew really look like when we dance. . .)
(P.S. Miranda's really already dancing because we got great news from an RYS submitter this week. Plus she's so excited for what's up next week, she might even post it early. . .)