Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Another Post About Submissions and Journals

When I was looking through my poems I was working on the other day, I thought to myself, "I think these are good enough to gather into a batch to get out into the world." Clearly I could be wrong, and I could get all rejections back, and if that happens, I'm fine with it. I would be anyway, but it makes it easier to be fine with it when so many journals now are utilizing the online submissions manager.

Print journals. Magazines. Online Journals. Everyone.

It makes it so much easier on the folks submitting. Of the aforementioned batch, every submission was to a place -- some print, some online -- that either accepted email submissions or uses the online submissions manager. I didn't have to go to the post office. I didn't have to spend any money.

Think about it. If you send a batch of poems out to ten journals that accept simultaneous submissions -- as I do, and have yet to really hit places that don't accept simultaneous submissions because I don't trust their response time (meaning it's a lot easier to accept a form rejection when you know it's at more than just one place) and want to follow their rules -- it can add up.

SASE stamp costs: $4.20
Business-sized or 8 1/2 x 11 mailer (benefit of the doubt at $.75 cents to mail): $7.50

Basically it's going to be at least $10, or around $1 per submission with the SASE, which isn't a lot, but over time it can add up, not to mention all the ink and paper costs, which, again, add up.

Journals are making it easy on us. Easy to know when the rejection comes, since I think it probably hits the in box right when they reject it. Easy to upload. Everything about it's easy.

There are some things that need to be tweaked, yes, like being able to withdraw one poem in house, rather than the whole submission, which has happened to me before. You can always email each place and let them know if something's taken, but again, it would be easier for them so upon looking at the submission again you could see what's available and what's not. And Fence actually has you upload one poem at a time, which doesn't take too much extra time and does make it easier to click any poems that have been accepted elsewhere.

Gary had a post about this (about halfway down), and I think literally, if you had a batch of five poems, it was November 1st (a good bet that almost all the journals are taking submissions, but not a guarantee), and you wanted to send to 50 places -- online and print -- that accept email submissions or use the online submissions manager, you could. I'm not making a list, as you should start to make your own if you submit yourself (though Gary has a good one started), but it's just so nice to know these things. And it seems every month a journal that I really like and really want to get into starts up the submissions manager or now accepts emailed submissions.

Clearly I get very excited about the little things. But that's cool with me.