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Read all the editors' answers to Duotrope's interview question: What do submitters most often get wrong about your submissions process? Learn more.
Here is a small sampling from our recent Editor Interviews. We have interviewed over 1,725 editors.
Q: What do submitters most often get wrong about your submissions process?
A: Being rude and pushy will not suddenly make us accept your work. Fortunately for us, the majority of our submitters follow most of our guidelines. Thank you for that!
A: Sometimes submitters send us more than one poem. We only read one poem per writer in a submission cycle.
A: We as for FULLY edited and final mss but so many times we receive obviously poorly edited or non edited mss and we find this quite annoying, when we ask for this in our guidelines.
A: They put their names on their submissions. The submitter's name should be in the cover letter but nowhere else.
A: Contributors are still sending us submissions longer than our limits, and are not using the titles of their works as the titles of their submissions, all of which makes our work more difficult. Artists need to pay special attention to the requirement for an artist's statement, identification of media used, and specifications for the quality of the image.
A: Theme. This most often happens with "simultaneous" submitters. I'm all for submitting to more than one publication, it's efficient. Do you know something that is not efficient? Sending a story that has nothing to do with the theme. For me, not understanding your market is where a lot of writers go wrong.
A: A lot of people send us videos of themselves reading their poetry or simply text-only standard poetry. We do not consider this collage and reject it immediately. Please don't send us shakespearean sonnets, etc.
A: Don't leave your names on your submissions! As said earlier, we judge blind and if we see your name we can't consider your work. Second, if you don't know the magazine go to our website. We make it easier to get a sense of what we publish than many magazines. Take advantage of that. Don't just blanket every journal with your writing. We can tell when you're doing that.
A: They miss out the bio or the ending is weak.
A: Many times writers will submit for a particular issue, even if their work is not quite a perfect fit and editors now have great material that does not match our categorical theme. Since we have two areas for placement, we are able to select more entries. If we receive an undeniable entry that is not matched to our particular theme, we often can use that material for our 'Monthly Spotlight' areas - which provides an incredible separate space for specialty viewing. For many publications, this is an instant rejection and the writer's work will be rejected. My advice is to carefully read the guidelines and always choose pieces that will be categorically acceptable for the theme.
A: On the whole, we don't have much trouble with submitters getting things wrong with the process. However, we can bank on a few submissions over 2,000 words almost every time we put out a new call for work.
A: They send us work that isn't Cyberpunk.