Frequently Asked Questions

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The following is a list of common questions related to AuthorAdvance, its use and its content. Click on a question below to view its answer.

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General Questions about AuthorAdvance

LitMatch was a literary agent research and submission tracking website, and the predecessor of AuthorAdvance. It went online in September of 2007, and was replaced by AuthorAdvance in October of 2009.

AuthorAdvance is a social network designed specifically for writers, publishers and lovers of literature. It contains a variety of features and tools to help you get organized, find markets, meet other writers and publishing professionals, share your work, and hone your craft.

AuthorAdvance's features include:

  • Search listings of Agencies, Agents, Contests, Events, Markets, Products, Publishers, Resources and Services that users can add to and edit
  • Track your submissions with free tools to keep you organized and give you more time to write
  • Connect with friends, share messages, and follow other users' posts
  • Create your own special-interest groups on any writing-related topic
  • Write and share articles with your fellow writers
  • Post blogs and share your posts on Twitter
  • Discuss literature and the craft of writing in our Forums

AuthorAdvance is free to anyone who wants to join.

Questions about Articles

Articles should be instructional or informational in nature, and geared toward improving the reader's understanding of some aspect of the writing craft, the publishing industry, or the writing lifestyle.

Blog posts can be about almost anything, and are usually more anecdotal than informational. Blogs usually convey personal stories, and are more indicative of the author's personality than an article.

Generally speaking, if you have any doubt as to whether an item should be a blog post or an article, you should probably make it a blog post.

Questions about Blogs

Articles should be instructional or informational in nature, and geared toward improving the reader's understanding of some aspect of the writing craft, the publishing industry, or the writing lifestyle.

Blog posts can be about almost anything, and are usually more anecdotal than informational. Blogs usually convey personal stories, and are more indicative of the author's personality than an article.

Generally speaking, if you have any doubt as to whether an item should be a blog post or an article, you should probably make it a blog post.

There are a number of benefits to posting your blog on AuthorAdvance. By posting here, you put your thoughts and ideas in front of thousands of published and aspiring authors, and make them available to anyone who runs a search on AuthorAdvance. Your blog will benefit from AuthorAdvance's search engine optimization, making your posts easier to find on major search engines like Google and Yahoo. You can also choose to automatically cross-post your AuthorAdvance blog entries to Twitter and LiveJournal.

And there's no need abandon your current blog if you want to post on AuthorAdvance. You can always post the same entries on both sites.

Questions about Groups

A group is a way for users to get together to share interests and information. The member who creates the group controls who can join the group, and whether the group is public or private. Once you join a group, you can post content and comments, hold discussions, schedule events, create contests, and invite others to join.

Some examples of what's possible with groups are:

  • An online writers' group for your home town, state/province or country
  • Critique groups to workshop your writing
  • An online home for your local writers' group or book club
  • Book-, author- and genre-related groups
  • Online poetry circles
  • Networking and employment opportunities
  • ...and almost anything else you can imagine!

You can create as many groups as you like. All groups must conform to our terms of service. Groups should be related to writing or the publishing industry in some way, or be generally of interest to AuthorAdvance users. Beyond this, there are no limits on the content or subject matter of groups.

Questions about Listings

Columns
Initial: Refers to the initial send or query letter, the first response from the listee.
Follow-up: Refers to responses that occur after the initial send, usually in response to a request for additional materials.
Overall: A combination of Initial and Follow-up, giving a complete picture of all responses.

Rows
Offers: The listee has made an offer to the user, either an offer of representation or publication, depending on the type of listing.
Requests: The listee has requested additional materials (often a full manuscript or additional edits).
Rejected: The listee has not accepted the submission.
Withdrawn: The submission has been withdrawn by the user who submitted it, or the user has not heard back after an extended period of time and assumed a rejection.

Any registered user may add or edit a listing. If you come across a listing that's out of date, just click on the "Edit" tab below the listing title. To add a listing, navigate to the type of listing that you want to add (Agency, Market, Product, etc.) and click the add link at the top of the page.

Listings are marked as inactive for a variety of reasons, the most common being that they are no longer in business or have passed away. We leave these listings in our database for research purposes and for the entering of historical queries.

Average Response Time is calculated from average of all reported response times for a given listing. It does not take into account submissions that are still awaiting replies.

Submission responses are considered positive if the initial contact resulted in a request for additional materials or an acceptance/offer of representation.

Not at all. Response times and numbers of submissions are just two in a range of criteria that a writer should consider when deciding whether to submit to a particular listing.

The number of submissions represents only those submissions that have been reported to AuthorAdvance by our users for that particular. It is not an indication of the total number of submissions the listing receives in the course of its operation.

Questions about Titles and Submissions

Columns
Initial: Refers to the initial send or query letter, the first response from the listee.
Follow-up: Refers to responses that occur after the initial send, usually in response to a request for additional materials.
Overall: A combination of Initial and Follow-up, giving a complete picture of all responses.

Rows
Offers: The listee has made an offer to the user, either an offer of representation or publication, depending on the type of listing.
Requests: The listee has requested additional materials (often a full manuscript or additional edits).
Rejected: The listee has not accepted the submission.
Withdrawn: The submission has been withdrawn by the user who submitted it, or the user has not heard back after an extended period of time and assumed a rejection.

We've taken all possible precautions to make sure that no submission data was lost or changed during the move from LitMatch to AuthorAdvance. If you are concerned that your data may have been lost or altered, please contact us, and we will investigate the issue.

A Title is a piece of writing that you have created. You enter information about your title on AuthorAdvance for the purpose of tracking the submissions you send for that title, and for finding matching listings to submit that title to.

A title can be any piece of writing, from a novel or non-fiction book to a poem or short story.

A submission is a record of all communications between yourself and an Agency, Agent, Contest, Market or Publisher related to a single title. If you enter a poem in a contest, that's a submission. If you send a manuscipt to an agent in a search for representation, that's a submission. If you send a short story on spec to a magazine, that's a submission.

The submission covers all communication from your initial contact (or query) to acceptance or rejection. It allows for as many responses and follow-ups as you need to keep complete track of your progress.

No. AuthorAdvance provides a service that lets writers keep track of the submissions they send, but does not actually send the submissions themselves. It is up to the user to send each submission and record the responses.

Yes. Only general, non-specifying information about a submission is displayed in our public listings. Personally identifiable information, such as the user’s name, project titles, etc. is shown only to the user who the information belongs to.

Yes. AuthorAdvance allows you to track your submissions regardless of when you sent them.

Title entry and submission tracking have moved to the navigation that appears on the left side of the page. These links only appear when you are logged in.

Questions about Users and Profiles

When you're logged on to the site, you can update your status in the left column just below your user photo. It's a short message that you can post to tell other users what you're up to, or share whatever's on your mind. If you're familiar with status messages on facebook, it works in much the same way. Status messages may also be cross-posted to Twitter if you have your Twitter account information entered into the system.

When viewing your profile, click on the "Edit" tab. In the "Account" section of that page, scroll down until you see a field marked "Upload Picture". By clicking the "Browse" button, you can find the image on your computer that you want to upload, and add it to your profile.

Questions about LitMatch

Unfortunately, the star ranking on the hotlist was one of the few features to not get ported over from LitMatch. However, the data has not been lost. Just contact us, and we'll be happy to email you a copy of your original hotlist, complete with rankings.

All LitMatch data has been archived, and will be stored offline for at least one year after the AuthorAdvance launch date (November 9th, 2009). We will, upon request, furnish any user with their original LitMatch data in order to compare it to their data on AuthorAdvance.