Last year at around this time, I confessed my "dirty submission secrets." My statistics last year turned out to be okay, though of course there were way more rejections than acceptances. My numbers are definitely worse this year.
In 2013, I submitted 100 bundles of poems, poetry comics, and short stories. I didn't intend to submit a perfect 100, but now my terrible percentages are easy to calculate, so I've got that going for me, which is nice.
21 journals accepted my work, which makes for a 21% acceptance rate. I received 63 rejections. 16 journals never replied. Of the 21 journals that accepted my work, two folded, so my percentage is more like 19%. That makes this easily the worst year since I started keeping track.
My bright idea to send poetry comics to the New Yorker may be to blame for some of the drop in my statistics. Also, I sent out way more submissions than usual (100 bundles instead of 60-70), and to some pretty high-prestige places, because hey, I'm the real thing, right? Well, apparently the high-prestige mags mostly didn't think so. Once again, I learned the same lesson I'm always learning: the really satisying interactions with editors and other writers aren't necessarily connected with prestige. If I were in charge of the poetry world, for example, Menacing Hedge would have a reputation on level with the Kenyon Review. But I'm not.Who is in charge of the poetry world, anyway? I'd like to have a word with that person.
Oh, I forgot the best acceptance of all, not included in my statistics because it was for a full-length manuscript, not a story or a group of poems. Red Hen Press, which published my last book, accepted a new collection of poems, tentatively titled "Suicide Hotline Hold Music." The book will have comics in it! I'm pretty excited about that! So maybe I should consider this a bang-up year after all.