An Experiment: The Submissions’ Log

For years, I’ve been keeping track of my work-in-process, submissions, acceptances, and declines in monthly folders – one for each. Sometime in December, I saw a challenge to share submissions, rejections, and whatnot. As a result, beginning in January I decided it might be easier to track with a log (and no, it’s not in Excel, which gives me vertigo!).

I’m definitely finding the log to be a good idea for me. I’m highlighting outstanding submissions in blue, and keeping a tally of them at the top, too, like a count down. . .I’m also using this to keep a record of payments so that I can give those to my awesome tax lady next year.

Thank you to whomever put forth the challenge to share declines – or rejections (whichever term you prefer). Here’s a basic run-down on the past four months:

Month Subs Acceptances Declines
Jan. 3 0 3
Feb. 21 4 10
March 14 6 5
April 14 5 3

While I’m still waiting to hear back on 15 submissions, you get the idea. Not sure how to calculate the ratio of submissions to declines, but the point is to keep sending out those rejections after giving them a good review (and possibly a revision).

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  1. Many moons ago, I actually risked setting my own head spinning and set up a couple of Excel spreadsheets to keep track of submissions and acceptances/payments. When I was submitting material to zines on a regular basis, it made keeping track of my submissions and acceptances/payments a lot easier. Plus, with excel, I could find and select for just acceptances or just rejections. I could also find and select for individual zines, which helped me avoid re-sending a work to a zine that already rejected it.


    • Great to hear from you, Richard! I should take an Excel class for Dummies. Do you have a link? Would love to interview you for my Day in the Life series. Please email me at!



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