Saturday 1 June 2024

Magazine response times

Womag news

Here's some information from The People's Friend about response times, and other things. I suggest reading the whole thing, but here's a snippet 'if you haven’t had an acceptance within a year of submission and you know your story was safely received, your story has been unsuccessful.' Although a year seems a long time, I very much welcome a definite cut off period.

Back in 2019 I sent a story to a magazine (not TPF). In 2020 I sent a query, as I'd not heard anything. In 2021, after hearing nothing I gave up on it and submitted it elsewhere. It was accepted, published and paid for in 2022. A few days ago, I received a reply to the query sent in 2020, rejecting the story, but assuring me it has been read and considered. I wonder when that happened?

My news

We've reached Orkney now, but I'm a bit delayed with my picture processing (too much time spent taking more!) so these are some shots taken at RHS Harlow Carr on the way up.


Sheelagh said...

Thanks Patsy, hope you're having some fine weather there too. Yes I read that info about the 12 months cut off which is great really. That's a very odd situation that someone would reply to a 4 year old message! I think I'd lose heart altogether with womag submissions if I was expected to wait 5 years for a response. I had a 'maybe' last year for one story to TPF so not sure if the same rule applies there i.e. can I assume it's a no after 12 months if I haven't heard by then then.

Elizabeth McGinty said...

Thanks Patsy,

Yes, I had a similar situation (not TPF) thinking something hadn't been accepted due to a magazine's specific cut off points. Then an offer arrived from them out of the blue.

Thankfully it hadn't been accepted elsewhere but I had a mad scramble sending emails to withdraw it from consideration from another mag, just in case!

It's hard to decide when to submit elsewhere when you don't have clear information.

Hope you are enjoying your travels and getting some good but probably windy weather! Looking forward to seeing the photos.

Sharon boothroyd said...

It is difficult, waiting for response times.
Going back years, all rejected work sent out via snail mail was returned in your SAE within 3 months.
I have stories out from 3/ 4 years ago with one magazine and still no yay or nay on the majority of them. I've now chased it up.
I've had 2 rejects - and one of these I'd withdrawn, anyway.
There's been no word on the rest.
I also send this stack of work out elsewhere, because if they can't provide a clear answer, I can't guarantee that a story will be available if and when they want it.
I don't tend to submit the ones out 'on file' with an all rights contract, elsewhere though.
A new romance e-mag (I think it's an e-mag) has launched, but the prize is publication only. Details are on the Secret Attic website under 'Updates.'
Bear in mind that this is the team behind Lipstick and Lies e-mag, which launched, closed, launched again and then finally closed.
They also launched and closed the Fictionette fiction project.
I sent in several stories to Lipstick and lies (great title)) but the editor closed it, as apparently, they didn't receive enough stories to fill the e-mag.
The thing is, most pro or semi- pro womag writers expect to be paid, even it's just a small fee.

Marguerite said...

As I've said before, when you are more mature (to put it politely) it becomes relative. I would leave what I deem to be an appropriate time if they don't put a time limit on it at all. If they have set a long time limit (I think a year is too long), then I suppose it's up to you. And you can always withdraw, I suppose. My 'appropriate time' would depend on, say, whether it was a Christmas, Halloween or whatever... and had not been picked up by the seasonal event. I wouldn't leave it to fester for yet another Christmas. As for a 4-year-old message... I'd be beginning to wonder about their organization skills! Still, hope you are enjoying all your travels, Patsy. It certainly sounds like it.
I enjoy subbing to Secret Attic because it gives me focus but I do regard it more like a club. I have sometimes won or been selected and that does give confidence to someone like me, coming late to writing and not from a creative arts background.

Anonymous said...

Lovely photos, Patsy. Looking forward to seeing Orkney.

I can’t believe it, but I have some happier news to share this week.
I heard back from TPF, and they have accepted my story!

What are your thoughts on whether it is acceptable to submit a revised/reworked version of a previously rejected story?


Anonymous said...

I suppose a writer's decision whether to set their own timelines depends on how many markets they have. And, in terms of women's magazines, there aren't many choices - especially if you're not in the closed shops (My Weekly, Fiction Feast) and/or don't want to give away your rights. It's good that TPF have introduced a timeline, but I've always left stories with them for as long as it takes to hear back (sometimes two months, sometimes over two years). It's frustrating, but it's the way contemporary publishing is.

Sharon Boothroyd said...

Well done hb and to all who have had positive news.
I often re-sub stories that I've re-drafted. It depends on the mag,though.
I usually give it a lot of thought before I decided to re-sub a reject, even if I've changed it a lot.
The womag fiction slots are pretty narrow now which was why I mentioned secret attic competitions and this new romance project.
I'm ok with no fee as I regard my writing as a hobby and I have plenty of material!

Anonymous said...

I don't submit to non-paying markets or to those like Secret Attic that pay a nominal fee. By the time exchange rates and bank fees are factored in, I wouldn't receive a cent. It's not my day job, but I still expect to derive income from my fiction writing. It may not be a substantial income, but I expect it to give back for the time put in.

Liz (I was also the anonymous poster above)

Patricia G said...

Thanks for the heads up re: TPF waiting times, Patsy, although it doesn't look good for my PN, submitted well over a year ago. I've tried a number of times to get some kind of response from Tracey but I've a horrible feeling my messages end up in her spam folder. I'll try once more and let you if the 1 Year cut-off point also applies to PNs.
Congratulations, HB! Something to lift your spirits at last.
Enjoy your road trip, Patsy, and thanks for the lovely pics.
Patricia G

Eirin said...

Congratulations, HB! Delighted for you!

Patsy, thanks, as always, for keeping the blog going - I'm looking forward to following your latest adventures and seeing your pics.

Marguerite said...

Well done, HB! What a coup :)

Patricia G said...

I've heard from Tracey and she tells me that due to pressure of work (there's an enormous backlog of PNs to work through which she's dealing with single-handedly) there's no one year cut-off point for PNs.
Patricia G

Sharon boothroyd said...

Oh, the web pages have been cleared on the Secret Attic website and there's a 'On a short break - back soon' message!
That doesn't look good... knowing their history of setting up and closing projects, it doesn't inspire trust and confidence in the team.
They should be announcing the results of the May comps around now.
I just hope that this isn't another project that they've quicky shut down!
I only entered the comps for June yesterday and the submission page for this new romance mag has also disappeared.
Has anyone any news about it?

Marguerite said...

I've looked on the what I can see of twitter pages, Sharon, re the Micromance, as in, still there, but I can only see so much as I don't have twitter. Yesterday on Secret Attic was a 'title page' which looked as though it was a substack account to subscribe to.

Maisie Bishop said...

Secret Attic is a mystery! I had an email from them on 31 May with updates about competitions etc, and now, as Sharon points out there's a message saying they're on a break. Like Liz, I prefer to be paid for my writing, but when I'd explored all avenues with a story, and it had been endlessly rejected, I used to send it through to Secret Attic (when you didn't have to pay to submit - I've lost track of where they stand on payment now) and more often than not they'd publish my story, so at least it was 'out there' - somewhere in the ether!

Sharon boothroyd said...

I had quite a few accepted by Fictionette and I was pleased that these stories had finally found a home.
I was disappointed when it was shut down, but I wasn't surprised.
It was currently free to enter the SA comps but they also had an ongoing comp, where it was £7 to enter.
I should imagine that the people who have paid this must be feeling worried about it.
I don't understand this 'on a break' message, really.
When my hubby and I ran websites, there was no need to take down all the web pages for just a short break.
It's easier to leave them where they are.

Marguerite said...

Just found this, Sharon:

Sharon Boothroyd said...

SA also charge £12 a year for members to access all areas of the website, such as the story store.
The site has been down for around 4-5 days now and no-one knows when it will be back online.
If I'd paid £12,I'd be demanding my money back.
Just what the heck is going on?