While only a ‘yes’ is really all that matters, I can’t help but notice that a lot of my stories are beginning to get past the initial ‘no’ phase and into the second round consideration.

Second round consideration is where the true decision makers make the final cuts — so at the very least, I’m getting to the important people. Eileen sent me a link called Submitting to the Black Hole that writers use to track how long a publication responds. It’s interesting because it lists the length of time, along with the result (rewrite, sale, rejection). But you can start to see patterns.

Here are a couple of examples.

Intergalactic Medicine Show — I’m currently at 314 days. I was notified back in September that I was in the second round. If you don’t get out of the first round, you’re rejected within 90 days. The only sales listed were two both past 300 days. So I’m in good territory. Will it sell? Who knows. This is just a sampling. Now this magazine, I KNOW I’m in final consideration. It’s also a biggie (a SFWA member).

On Spec — once again, if you hear back quickly, it’s going to be a rejection. Anything LESS than 230 days is going to be a rejection. Well, I’m at 175 days. So I think I’m at the least being ‘held over’ which can be a good thing. Doesn’t seem like anyone who makes a sale is accepted within the listed guidelines (up to 170 days). It takes longer.

Recently, Dead Letter Office received second round consideration at Abyss and Apex (so I sent them Dignity Memorial, mentioning the second round consideration…and it’s a shorter story).

I’m hoping to make this a number’s game. If I can write enough stories, with enough circulating, that some of these places will actually begin to remember my name — as crazy as that sounds.