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Several of my book submissions were never acknowledged or returned, and I have sent letters withdrawing my work from consideration. Is this sufficient to protect me legally?

Q: I am a writer-illustrator of picture books and have submitted about 40 dummies and manuscripts to various publishers over the past three years. (I’ve gotten encouragement but no sales as yet). Several of these submissions were never acknowledged or returned, even after a year, (SASEs were enclosed), and my follow-up letters and then phone calls were disregarded. What should my next step be? I have sent letters withdrawing my work from consideration and asking for its return, (which has never happened). Is this sufficient to protect me legally and may I then continue to submit my work to other publishers without worrying about these works-in-limbo?

You’re covered once you’ve notified the publisher that you’re withdrawing the manuscript. 1:2/04