We received 295 submissions of fiction. 254 have currently not been accepted. We have 33 stories to read, some of which are in consideration.
Overall, I think the process went very smoothly. For the last issue, issue three, we used an email address for submissions, and with a little script I wrote we forwarded the stories to each editor in a round-robin fashion. But we lost a few emails this way, and it wasn’t immune to spam, which when sent to the submissions address caused a little confusion.
So for this issue I decided to use my programming skills and craft a web-based submissions tracker system. Authors upload their files to our web server, and our editors can read the submissions anywhere, even at work, and not just where they have access to their personal email. In addition, the system allows us to see each other’s queues, which becomes very useful when it comes time to decide on a story. It makes it very easy to share. It also has a handy little comment feature, which lets us record our thoughts in a blog-like fashion. I’ve relied heavily on these comments to make final decisions on a story. In rejection letters for stories which are close, but not quite there, I’ve often quoted the editors’ comments verbatim because I felt the more information we can give an author, the more helpful it is.
We could have used a few more features. I would have liked to save more information from each author, like snail mail addresses and real names in addition to pen names. From the behind the scenes point of view, it would have been easier if the editors could see a log of our rejection letters because referring back to them can often be helpful. These features and more will hopefully make it into issue five’s submission system.
In general, we received good feedback from authors regarding our rejection letters. We tried to be as helpful as possible. I’m very interested to hear from you guys, the authors. Did you find our submission system adequate? Was there something lacking or a feature you thought it should have but didn’t? Did we do a good job? Please comment below!
Once again, thanks to all authors, poets, & artists who submitted to us! It is, as always, you who make the magazine what it is.