Fiction Ed’s Blog: Waiting To Hear About A Submission?

Shutterstock / Ju Jae-young © submission

Waiting to hear if your submission has been successful?

Here are some reasons why you may not have received a response as yet.

It’s a less-commonly used story length

Generally speaking, we publish more 2000 and 3000-word stories than other lengths, so these are the stories that are most likely to be read as a matter of priority.

For example, we only need one 4000 word story per Special, and one Long Read every other Special, so while we remain home working, we tend to be reading only as many of these as we’re likely to need for the next few issues.

It’s a 1200-word story

1200 words is the story length that we’re most frequently sent. So if your story was a 1200-word length, it may have a longer response time. We generally already have a fairly good stock of these.

It’s with Angela or Lucy

If you’re a published author sending stories by email, once your story been read by your assigned Editor, it’s then passed to Fiction Ed Lucy for consideration, and Editor Angela, for final approval – so it could be that it’s in their reading queue. Check with your assigned editor if you’d like an update.

It’s seasonal

Seasonal stories are always most welcome. But if your story is set in autumn, for example, or at Christmas, stories for issues due to be published before then will take priority.

It was an emailed submission from overseas

Prior to the first lockdown, the only submissions we accepted by email were rewrites, or submissions sent from overseas. Our Admin Team have been storing overseas USMs safely for us during lockdown.

They’ve now been passed on to the Team for consideration and will be responded to within the next few weeks.

It’s waiting to be read

If you’re an author who has not yet been published in the “Friend” and your submission was sent in by post after the first lockdown, it will still be in the office.

As government guidelines in Scotland have stipulated home working as the default position, that’s been the “Friend” position since March 2020 — our office building is closed. Once restrictions ease, we’ll aim to respond to all unread submissions as a matter of priority.

Our Mail Team are ensuring that all mail is stored safely.

We’re looking at ways to handle USM submissions now, and will keep you abreast of developments on the “Friend” website.

For more from Lucy, read the Fiction Ed’s blog here.

For more on subscribing to “The People’s Friend”, click here.

Lucy Crichton

Fiction Editor Lucy is always on the look-out for the very best short stories, poems and pocket novels. As well as sourcing enjoyable content, she enjoys working with our established contributors, encouraging new talent, and celebrating 155 years of 'Friend' fiction!