The great not knowing

So I have a couple of short stories out for consideration that I submitted through the sites’ submission manager (rather than sent in via email). The submission manager allows me to visit the site and check on the “progress” of my submission. And, of course, I do that every day. Sometimes several times a day.

I’m convinced that the next time I check, the status will have just changed from “In Process” to “Accepted.” (Even “Declined” wouldn’t be so bad since that the norm for me anyway.) But each time I check, nothing has changed.

The mechanism notes that as soon as the status changes, I will receive an email notification. Thus it’s really futile for me to go the the submission manager to check on my status. If I haven’t received an email, nothing has changed so there’s no need to check. And if I have received an email, then it will tell me the status so there’s no need to check.

I feel like a fool checking even as I feel compelled to check.

I’m not sure what the advantage is in these submission managers. I suppose it standardizes the process for the magazine, and maybe it scans the submissions for viruses and such. And I guess their email boxes can be left less clogged with chaff so they can see the wheat. But what does it do for the lowly submitter? I’m not seeing the upside. Does anyone have some enlightenment for me?

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2 Comments on “The great not knowing”

  1. Pete Says:

    I wouldn’t bother checking several times a day. Journals simply don’t move that quickly. (Other than Smokelong Quarterly, which never takes more than about three days to reject my work.) I assume you’re referring to submishmash, which I’ve experienced from both the writer side and editor side. That system is mostly for the editor’s benefit, especially when there are multiple editors involved – it keeps all the submissions neatly organized, and is highly preferable to having a bunch of email submissions sitting in somebody’s inbox.

  2. Paul Says:

    I can verify your comment about Smokelong Quarterly being swift about rejection submissions.


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