Saturday, June 16, 2012

Number of Submissions before Acceptance

I recently saw a blog documenting people's number of submissions before their first acceptance of a story by a publication. One guy had submitted a piece fifty-nine times before it had been accepted somewhere (and for pay). Some people put up some rather surprising numbers in terms of percentage accepted (in the realm of about 30 percent, whereas others were more in my realm of 2 percent).

Anyway, the blog made me wonder how many rejections each published piece had to go through before being accepted. I've broken it out by short stories and poetry. Let's look at poetry first:

Interestingly, if a poem is going to be accepted, it looks like it has the best chance of happening within the first three submissions. That said, as the number of times I submit a poem goes up, so too does the likelihood that an editor will note liking the poem but not accepting it.

Now let's look at stories:

Pretty much, the same rules hold up for stories as for poems, though stories appear to be much more difficult to have accepted, at least for me.

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