Formatting stuff in Word is dull, dull, dull. For some reason (an excess of $? wishful thinking? temporary insanity?), I have paid my $50 to enter Chivalrous (with a slightly spiffed-up title) in the RWA Golden Heart. That maked a grand total of TWO contests that it will be in. Probably the final grand total--I must save some $ to start all over again with Accomplice, once its finished :)
In any case, I must submit the first 50ish pages of my manuscript, plus a single copy of the full. I can either print the whole thing out, or mail a CD. CD sounds cheaper (and nicer to the trees), except that they want the MS in a single file. Mine was in one file per chapter. And none of them had any formatting whatsoever (preferring to keep the data raw, you know...).
So I spent over an hour last night creating one giant file, and then adding doublespacing (removing extra spaces between paragraphs). Yuck. I didn't do any other editing--just formatting. And I couldn't find a way to make Word remove my extra lines without removing too many extra lines, so it was 300 pages of delete-scroll-scroll-delete-scroll-delete. It felt distressingly like work. Makes me think that keeping the data in XML and then creating a XSL to format it would be much faster and easier--except that HTML wasn't one of the preferred submission formats. Yes, I'm a geek.
I also copied my synospsis out of my Yahoo mail, and found it to be nearly 5 pages (double-spaced). Perfect. I'm now a little closer to a trip to Kinkos and the post office. Though I think I have another editing/polishing pass to make through the MS first, to round off a few rough edges.