On the inefficiency of poetry magazines

How many poets does it take to change a light bulb?
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On the inefficiency of poetry magazines

Post by Nash » Sun Mar 03, 2013 11:42 pm

I know it's only a little thing and I'm just griping but some of these magazines drive me up the fucking wall. No, that's wrong, some of these people that run these magazines drive me up the fucking wall. I understand that these things are run voluntarily, for no money, out of the goodness of their own hearts and all that, but if you're not going to do something properly then don't do it at all.

An example, I submitted a poem to a relatively well respected print magazine in September 2011. After about 3 months I hadn't heard anything back so I sent them a polite email to chase it up. Several days went by before I received a reply, they'd lost my submission and asked me to send it again. I didn't bother and submitted it somewhere else, they rejected it pretty quickly. February 2012 I heard back from the original magazine and they accepted it and it would be in their Autumn 2012 edition. Hooray!

Still no sign of that Autumn 2012 edition and it's now Spring 2013. I contacted them about it and "yeah, it's been delayed because of other work commitments". Why take on the editorship of a magazine if you've no intention of running it to its full potential?

Then you've got the ones that accept email submissions and the editor has no idea how to run their inbox. Another well respected magazine lost my email submissions....twice.

How much would it really take for the editors to inform the submitter through the stages of the process by automated emails? i.e. Rejected/short-listed/accepted. I run an online business and each customer is informed of every stage of their order, it takes virtually no time at all once the system is in place.

There are several others that are bit lackadaisical in their approach, but there are good ones too:

Antiphon (of course). Well done Ros and Noel for using submishmash. Why doesn't everyone?
Ink, Sweat and Tears. Polite and very efficient.
The Delinquent. Great, you even get an automated email to let you know they've received the submission.
Other Poetry. They rejected me, but at least they sent the rejection letter quickly instead of keeping me wondering.

If anyone wants to add more good ones then please do!

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Re: On the inefficiency of poetry magazines

Post by pseud » Mon Mar 04, 2013 10:16 am

could not agree more, Nash, it sounds like a common experience.
"Don't treat your common sense like an umbrella. When you come into a room to philosophize, don't leave it outside, but bring it in with you." Wittgenstein

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Re: On the inefficiency of poetry magazines

Post by David2 » Sat Mar 09, 2013 10:16 am

If you want a good recommendation, and a prompt response (for good or bad), there's one Seth champions ... http://thepassionatetransitory.yolasite.com/

It's pretty good, at least.

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Re: On the inefficiency of poetry magazines

Post by Ros » Sat Mar 09, 2013 12:21 pm

I'm surprised that anyone can run a mag that accepts email submissions without using something like Submittable. You'd be swamped. Although to the reader 4 issues a year seems pretty well spaced, in fact it doesn't leave much of a gap between them in terms of editorial stuff. But I think it's probably the minimum to keep it alive and people interested.
I can't really imagine managing paper submissions at all, and it's quite a faff making them in the first place.

Poetry London rejected me fairly quickly and efficiently!

Rosencrantz: What are you playing at? Guildenstern: Words. Words. They're all we have to go on.
Antiphon - www.antiphon.org.uk

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