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Editor Interview: Literally Stories

Q: Describe what you publish in 25 characters or less.

A: Diverse short fiction

Q: What other current publications (or publishers) do you admire most?

A: The Book Folks

Q: If you publish writing, who are your favorite writers? If you publish art, who are your favorite artists?

A: Lee Child, Terry Pratchett,

Q: What sets your publication apart from others that publish similar material?

A: We are very very friendly and very quick to respond

Q: What is the best advice you can give people who are considering submitting work to your publication?

A: Stop sending us children's stories as we don't publish them!! Read the submission guidelines and as far as possible try to adhere to them - simply because it ensures a quicker response and we don't like to keep writers waiting

Q: Describe the ideal submission.

A: An email which gives the title, genre and word count and the story attached as a separate file.

Q: What do submitters most often get wrong about your submissions process?

A: Omitting the title, word count and genre from the email and not setting up the Word file (or equivalent) in accordance with our guidelines. We don't preclude good work because of these things, we realize that not everyone has the requisite software or skill, but it does make our handling of the work much more complicated.

Q: How much do you want to know about the person submitting to you?

A: We do like a cover letter but when we accept a piece for publication we do ask authors to submit a short author bio and image if they want to and we include that on our author page and author gallery - we think it helps to make our site a friendly place when we can put a face and a bit of background to a name. Lists of previous publications don't really matter as we hope that we take every story on its own merits.

Q: If you publish writing, how much of a piece do you read before making the decision to reject it?

A: Unless it is obvious from very very early on that the piece is not going to be accepted and yes, we can usually weed those out quickly, at least three of the editors read all of the story and if there is any doubt we debate and discuss until we reach agreement.

Q: What additional evaluations, if any, does a piece go through before it is accepted?

A: Just three "yes" votes

Q: What is a day in the life of an editor like for you?

A: Because Literally Stories is very much a group venture made up of people with full time "other lives" there is a sharing of the responsibilities, Acknowledgement of submissions are done by any member of the editorial team so that writers don't wait too long to know that their work has been received and this also includes from our end the setting up of the reading process.
Once the stories are read and a decision reached then there is one editor tasked with notification (wherever possible as this gives authors a name to latch on to) and the setting up and posting of the stories on the site is also pretty much the responsibility of one person which we have found works best in order to preclude any doubling up and confusion.

Q: How important do you feel it is for publishers to embrace modern technologies?

A: Absolutely vital

Q: How much do you edit an accepted piece prior to publication?

A: We make small corrections to the text if we are sure that this will not change the way that the author intended the work to be presented. We do not send those changes back to the author. Occasionally when a work is too good to miss but needs more extensive changes we will return this to the author with our suggestions. Then it is up to them whether or not they want to re-submit.

Q: Do you nominate work you've published for any national or international awards?