Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Simultaneous submissions

There is a post at Literary Rejections On Display regarding the policy that many literary magazines have on not accepting simultaneous submissions. It is something I have been pondering now that I'm trying to be proactive and get my fiction out into the big wide world.

I am quite obedient, so when I see the rules of subs and they state that I have to agree to give them exclusivity on viewing, well, I abide by it. I send my precious piece in, and I wait to hear if they like it or not. If so, ace, if not, then I go to my next choice. Of course this means that if they respond quickly it's fine, but not all magazines are so swift. Elimae  ♥ responded almost immediately with a rejection, and then with an acceptance, but they are the exception. I have been waiting a few months on responses for a couple of stories, and I may well wait a few more. In that time those stories are out of action, and in  all probability they aren't sitting in a file having been read on receipt and now being considered, they are likely to be in a huge pile that one day someone will whizz through and send form rejections back on. 

So, let's think this through, I have spent time and care writing something that I hope will be accepted by a magazine and published. Lots of these 'zines do not pay me a penny for my work. I am meant to be grateful that they will display my words. I am grateful. But when they "sit" on my story for ages before tossing it back to me they are disrespecting me, and every other writer that they do that too. If I know from experience that a mag is likely to take its time, is it fair enough to send my work elsewhere too?

Apparently most writers do just that.

2 comments:

Kerry said...

Hey, thanks for posting this! I am a complete rule follower because, as a relative newby, I figure it is best to play safe. Not any more! You've brought out the inner rebel in me :)simultaneous subs all the way now!

Kay Sexton said...

I just tagged you! Yes, I know, you'll never talk to me again ... but it's a very serious tag, about promoting books that deserve higher public attention, and if I thought for a year, I know I couldn't think of anybody more qualified than you!

All the details are at http://writingneuroses.blogspot.com - can't wait to see what you choose ...

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