We seem to be enjoying our debates here on womagwriter. I wonder what you'll all have to say about this topic? Once again, I'm a little out of the loop here, having not written or submitted a short story for some time, but a writer who wishes to remain anonymous asked me to raise this topic. It seems some magazine editors are keeping writers dangling on a thread, telling them a story is 'almost certainly a sale' and they will get back to the writer soon. But months go by, and chasing emails leave the story still unconfirmed as a sale.
Here's what the writer had to say:
After years of writing and selling stories, 18 months ago I decided to take the plunge and see if I could make this my living. Well it paid off as I have now sold almost 100 stories etc and last year I sold an additional 41 stories, articles and serials to the mags both here and abroad.
However for the last 2 months I haven't earned a bean. This is despite having over 50 new stories submitted to mags around the world. I believe this is due to a worrying new trend. What I call THE ALMOST SALE.
This is worse than a rejection as it means the eds keep you hanging on indefinitely. It's happening here in the UK and abroad. I've been told my stories are almost certainly sales and that they will confirm shortly. But despite lots of 'nice' chasing emails from em, I haven't had a confirmation yet.
The dilemma is - do you ask for the stories back and try to re-sell knowing you've got at least another 3 month wait or hang on in there as you are so close.
I believe this is worse than a rejection as you can at least re-market then.
I'd be interested to hear other writers comments.
Have other writers had this experience? I realise for newer writers an 'almost sale' would be exciting and would be classed much better than a rejection, but for those who try to make a living from writing I can see it must be very frustrating. What do you think?