I just remembered to update my Submission Tracking Spreadsheet (Ta-Dah!). I actually have one of those, and I’ve been really really good about (not!) keeping it updated, ever since I started submitting short stories in the Dark Ages (2003), way back B.C. (Before Children).
I was quite impressed with myself to discover that I have submitted 42 times and that, in spite of my low success rate, I keep doing it! Go, me! Go, persistence! The story that was submitted the most (9 times) is The Most Beautiful Woman in the World (otherwise known as The Story With the Stupid Long Title) before I gave up and decided to offer it along with Here Comes in the Bride in an e-book that you can download here. The runners-up, at seven times out each, are Second Sight (which found a home) and Ill Met by Afternoon Light (which didn’t).
Incidentally, what is it with me and long titles?
Alas, none of my humorous stories found homes. Proof that I’m not as funny as I think I am? Or maybe long title overload caused editors’ brains to frizzle and garnered instant rejection: Ill Met by Afternoon Light, In the Lair of the Dark Lord (goodness, could I have come up with a more ponderous beast of a title?) and A Plague of Chicken (which I still think is a cute title and a cute premise).
Ah, I see that I cunningly disguised in the Lair of the Dark Lord by renaming it Prophecy’s End later on, but failed to lure an editor into accepting it.
Some day, I will go back to these old old stories and see how cringe-worthy they are. If they are specially egregious, I will post up snippets and we can all laugh at them.
How about you? Any awe-inspiring submission statistics to share?
If you ever find yourself looking for something better than a spreadsheet to keep track of your story submissions, consider this:
The Writer’s Database
According to my WritersDB stats, my story Something Wicked That-A-Way Went has gone out 14 times, so I’ve got you beat on submissions for a single story. (And what was that about long titles?)
On the other hand, I’m sure you’re beating me on total submissions A.P. (After Progeny).
Thanks for the link.
Did you ever sell that story that went out 14 times?
It won an honorable mention in the Writers of the Future contest, which is better than a plain ol’ rejection — but nope, it hasn’t been published anywhere.