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Read all the editors' answers to Duotrope's interview question: How much do you want to know about the person submitting to you? Learn more.
Here is a small sampling from our recent Editor Interviews. We have interviewed over 1,550 editors.
Q: How much do you want to know about the person submitting to you?
A: Lists of publication credits do not necessarily matter. Cover letters are necessary; they should contain a short bio of the submitter too.
A: We are happy to include a bio of a couple of paragraphs. If it important to the person submitting that they include the names of other publications, then we can publish that, but it doesn't not matter to us in and of itself. We like to know the general basic information - where they are from, what they like to write, if they have genre specialities, and also where people who like their story can find out more about them.
A: No. I'd prefer to fall in love with the material on its own merits entirely.
A: Mandy: We love getting to know our Askewians but for the purpose of submissions, we only need to know what the author wants the reader to know. Basically, the author bio. We don't give preference to authors who are previously published but we are happy to include those credentials in their bio.
A: There's no need for cover letters, but we love to hear what inspired you to create your work. Not Your Mother's Breast Milk is a very artist driven site. We like to show that in the artists we include on the site.
A: We love getting to know potential contributors; Memoir Mixtapes is about building community as much as it is about writing and music. Previous publications won't sway our decision in any way, but we'd love to read more of your work, so feel free to include those accomplishments in your cover letter.
A: Please send a cover letter in the body of your email that includes a brief, third-person bio. It should include a short list of publication credits and/or your jobs and/or your idiosyncrasies and obsessions. We enjoy seeing where you’ve placed work, but we are equally curious about what makes you tick—in a sentence, not a novel.
A: This isn't as important to us, though we always love to hear from people we have met face to face at a conference or festival. In the cover letter, we do have a look at bios, in part because we like to publish at least several emerging writers in each issue.
A: Not at all. Our submission reviewing process is actually a double-blind process.
A: An author’s bio doesn’t influence our editorial decisions. That said, we like to hear how submitting authors have heard of us, and to see where they have published, and we love to share their other credits via the author’s bio when a piece is accepted. We aren't a paying journal, so sharing credits is a little something we can do.
A: Publication credits do not matter in the least. You can include them of course, but they do not impact our decision to publish or not publish. In fact we might be more likely to publish you if you tell us that you've never been published before, that's not a guarantee. But I am glad to say that we have published a lot of wonderful first time voices. I prefer cover letters, it's just good form to say hello briefly and maybe talk a little bit about the work that you're sending. But I appreciate how hectic and busy life is and I don't demand or expect cover letters. They are nice though. It's also nice when people take the time to learn the editor's name. I do like to know about the people who are sending their work, most of our contributors do open up a lot about themselves and what they are sending in their cover letter, I welcome and love that when it happens. I'm a pretty personable and approachable editor, and I try to respond to each submission with the respect and attention they deserve.
A: We like to get to know our authors. During the editing process, we get to know you a bit because you will be working with editors closely and exchanging many emails. In addition, we like to know about our authors for marketing reasons. It allows us to help position the book to target audiences and make the author appealing. Also, knowing a bit about the author during the submissions process helps us see if we are the best publisher for that author and if they are a good fit for our company.