May 20, 2004

Returning manuscripts sucks.

OK, I just finished sending back all the story manuscripts we turned down. It took me nearly four solid days of sludging through it to get them out the door. For those of you who think putting out a literary journal is glamorous, I'm here to tell you it's not. It's very tedious sometimes, and this was one of those times. I especially get aggravated with the people who don't bother including SASE's with their submissions. Those are usually the ones who really get bent out of shape when they don't hear back from you. "I submitted a story several months ago and have yet to get a response back. Your listing in Writers' Market states you respond within three months. It has been longer than three months. Can you tell when you'll get around to making a decision?" Hello, ever heard of a SASE. We all have to shell out the bucks required for submitting. Those are the rules. You're not special. Here's another bit of advise: If it's been a really, really long time since you sent the story out and no one's gotten back,it's probably been rejected. Also, bothering the editors does not make them speed up their review of your story. If anything, it makes them put it at the bottom of the stack so that it takes an even longer time to hear back. We're all busy, get over yourself.

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