Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Issue Three, by the numbers...

For folks interested in this sort of thing, some numbers.

Poetry Submissions

Total number of authors: 26
male: 14 (53.8%)
female: 12 (46.2%)
Total number of submissions: 31 (119 poems)
(male authors are twice as likely to submit more than once)

Final round:
Total number of poems: 13 (by 9 authors)
male authors: 4 (44.4%)
female authors: 5 (55.6%)
poems by male author: 5 (38.5%)
poems by female author: 8 (61.5%)

Final line-up:
5 poems
4 authors
2 poems by female authors (40 %)
3 poems by male authors (60%)


Fiction Submissions

161 story submissions
96 male / 65 female subs  (some fudge factor for authors only providing their initials, etc.)
10 stories selected, 6% accepted
25 made it to final selection = 15% reached serious consideration
of those accepted, we have 7 female and 3 male authors

Looking at the last six rejected authors, three are female and three male, so this could have easily worked out quite differently.  The last two slots filled went to women writers.  One was selected over it's equally well-written competition because it presented a contrasting tone (dare I say 'uplifting?') to the generally darker typical submissions. The other presented folkloric content that I have never read before, and largely via amusing dialog which plays into the central fanstastic concept of the story.

Doing interesting things with their stories was the winning tactic for these writers.

GLBTQ? Minority content? Other under-represented groups?  Of course we don't poll the writers so I really have no clue other than what the stories present.  We have just one story with a positive portrayal of a GLBTQ character and one story featuring an under-represented culture.

We'd certainly like to see more submissions that feature such content or written by folks from under-represented groups.

Thoughts about submissions in general...

  • Humor is hard to write.  We appreciate it, and we acknowledge we are picky.  Less difficult but worth noting are stories that do not 'skew dark' and offer a lighter or more positive view of their world.  Yes, we cede Ligotti his points, but he's stuck just short of the whole picture.  (And, yes, I'll expand on that editorially in the near future.--BB)
  • That's not to suggest we are averse to dark tales.  This issue has some creepy stories, indeed.  
  • Alexa's efforts in the role of poetry editor have increased our poetry submissions from approximately five poems last reading period to one hundred nineteen this time around.  Who's the badass?  Yes, that would be Alexandra Seidel.
  • If that keeps up, we'll have to look at increasing how much poetry we publish per issue.  If you have need of ad space and want to support poetry in particular, hit the advert link on the site and we'll make sure your funds are used to those ends.
We will follow-up with our Table of Contents for Issue #3 later this week.