Summing Up The Submission Challenge

1 Oct

I’m writing this at 1pm on Monday September 30th, the final day of the challenge. I’ve already sent out all the subs I’m going to, it’s just a matter of waiting until midnight to see what other news regarding acceptances and rejections comes in over the rest of today. This post will ONLY contain news pertinant to the challenge. All other submission news will be posted in “So This Was September 2019”.

So how did you do, Ray? Pretty well, thanks for asking. 1 sale, to New Orbit Magazine. More than I expected, if I am being honest.

Did you manage to get 1 submission out every day? At least 1, yes. Several days it was more than 1.

What went where & what happened to it?

Sept 01 – Fair King, Fell Low to F&SF. A Monster Under Every Bed to The Dark (same day rejection). A Monster Under Every Bed to Black Static.

Sept 02 – Stray Kids Come Back to Clarkesworld. The Ghost Of A Chance to Commonwealth Short Story Prize. No from F&SF on Fair King, Fell Low. The Sleeping Season to F&SF.

Sept 03 – Black City to Speculative City. No from Clarkesworld on Stray Kids Come Back. No from Black Static on A Monster Under Every Bed.

Sept 04 – I’ve Fallen In Love With A Hologram, Again to Daily Science Fiction.

Sept 05 – Other People’s Gods to Trouble Among the Stars. No from F&SF on The Sleeping Season. The War Machines to F&SF.

Sept 06 – Top Field Tanks to Asimov’s (same day rejection). Timeshare to Alban Lake.

Sept 07 – The End Of The Centre to The New Southern Fugitives. No from F&SF on The War Machines. Body Banks to Analog. The Safety Of Checkpoints to ZNB APOCALYPTIC. Bitter Fruit to ZNB GALACTIC STEW. Befriend a Robot to ZNB MY BATTERY IS LOW AND IT IS GETTING DARK.

Sept 08 – Lost Souls to Flash Fiction Online.

Sept 09 – Insert #4 to Every Day Fiction.

Sept 10 – Uniform to Interzone. A Wizarding World to F&SF.

Sept 11 – One Step Closer to Beneath Ceaseless Skies. No from F&SF on A Wizarding World.

Sept 12 – A Trip To The Mall to Three-Lobed Burning Eye. Fair King, Fell Low to Clarkesworld. Body Banks to F&SF. Bizarre Life Triangle to Bronzeville; Twisted Love.

Sept 13 – Playing The System to Liquid Imagination. No from Interzone on Uniform. Uniform to New Orbit Magazine. No from Clarkesworld on Fair King, Fell Low. No from F&SF on Body Banks.

Sept 14 – The Witch In The Fog to Electric Spec.

Sept 15 – Into The Labyrinth to Not One of Us.

Sept 16 – I Hide Behind Cardboard Cliffs & Polystyrene Rocks to Monsters, Movies, & Mayhem. No from Beneath Ceaseless Skies on One Step Closer. Uniform sold to New Orbit Magazine! Playing For Time to Strange Horizons. Shake-down to F&SF.

Sept 17 – Previous Iterations to The Future Fire. No from F&SF on Shake-down.

Sept 18 – End Of The Line to Chrome Baby.

Sept 19 – Clever Clogs to Anotherealm.

Sept 20 – Absolute Power to Syntax and Salt.

Sept 21 – The Safety Of Checkpoints to Strange Fictions ‘Zine. Running With Scissors to Ink Stains.

Sept 22 – Body Banks to Clarkesworld. Seeking Asylum to The Arcanist.

Sept 23 – Top Field Tanks to Translunar Travelers Lounge. My Summer Holiday, By Billy Mesner (Aged 5) to Sirius Science Fiction. Seance Club to Coppice and Brake. No from Clarkesworld on Body Banks. No from Speculative City on Black City. No from Flash Fiction Online on Lost Souls.

Sept 24 – The Adventures Of The Amazing Jill, And Otter Bob to The Weird and Whatnot. It Takes A Dragon… to Flash Fiction Magazine. Report To Control to Flash Fiction Online.

Sept 25 – Fair King, Fell Low to Cosmic Roots and Eldritch Shores. Method One to Tell-Tale Press.

Sept 26 – Do Bears… to Augur.

Sept 27 – Transitional Period to F&SF.

Sept 28 – Somewhere, It’s Still Paris to Mithila Review. No from Not One of Us on Into The Labyrinth.

Sept 29 – Please Turn Over to Constellary Tales. No from F&SF on Transitional Period.

Sept 30 – Into The Labyrinth to F&SF. No from Daily Science Fiction on I’ve Fallen In Love With A Hologram, Again. Transitional Period to Clarkesworld Magazine. The Sex Lives Of Robots to Space and Time.

Over 30 days, a total of 56 stories were submitted. I received 20 rejections and made 1 sale.

So what happens now? I wait to find out what happens to the remaining stories still in submission. I got more stories out at once than I’ve ever had before (54, previous best was 44). I’m hopeful there will be a few more sales as all the markets I’ve sent out to were paying.

I’ve learnt a lot. I didn’t think I actually could send out 1 story every day for a month, so I’ve proved I’m more resilient & determined than I thought I was. That’s quite a nice kick in the teeth to my Imposter Syndrome. I’ve tried new markets, I’ve stuck to a schedule. Even when a few markets turned out to be closed, I was able to always get a sub out.

How do you think you managed to do this? Lots of preparation. All my stories were proofed & pretty much ready to be submitted apart from whatever formatting the market wanted & a cover letter. I also had spare stories for repeat markets which tipped me over the 30 stories mark fairly easily. I’m fairly sure 62 stories in a 31 day month is totally do-able.

What’s next? I’ve already made the decision to run the challenge again in Janary of 2020, and have already selected the 31 SF markets. I’m also going to try and find 31 horror markets too. I’ve started advertising the next event, hopefully a few sites will plug it for me. Once today is over, I’m going to have a few days off from submitting. Obviously, I’ll be watching out for responses from markets and will do a full write-up once all my replies from the challenge have come back. That won’t be until at least February of 2020 as Zombies Need Brains won’t be reading subs until then.

If you took part, I hope you achieved everything you wanted to. If that was to sub 30 stories, I hope that happened. If it didn’t, heck, it’s not a complete distaster. However many stories you got out, it’s better than none. Congratulations to those who made sales, or make sales when your replies finally come in. If you decide to join me in January, I’ll be happy to have you along for the ride again. If you take part for the first time, I’ll be just as happy to see you on my crazy train.

Remember the hashtag #SubmissionChallenge


Ray Daley @RayDaleyWriter

2 Responses to “Summing Up The Submission Challenge”

  1. Samantha Bryant October 1, 2019 at 1:33 pm #

    Congratulations on making it! And thanks again for developing this idea. It pushed me in good ways and I managed even with barely having prepped. I’m planning on participating again in January.


  1. So this was September 2019 | raymondwriteswrongs - October 1, 2019

    […] As you may or may not know, I’ve been submitting at least 1 story every day day for the last month. More about that here:- […]

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