A Year in Review: 2018’s Writerly Resolutions

For 2018, I decided to make a writing-based resolution. My goal was to submit to every magazine within two major publishing imprints: Cricket Media and the Highlights Group. That meant submitting my writing to seven different magazines for children (Cricket, Spider, Ladybug, Babybug, Highlights, High Five, and Hello).

In the interest of transparency and ownership over my successes and failures, I’ve decided to share a number of statistics pertaining to my writing ventures in 2018.



Total number of submissions in 2018:
 37

  • Fiction submissions in 2018: 17
  • Poetry submissions in 2018: 16
  • Nonfiction submissions in 2018: 3
  • Craft submissions in 2018: 2

Place of submission

  • Total number of submissions to Cricket Media in 2018: 12
    • Cricket: 2
    • Spider: 3
    • Ladybug: 3
    • Babybug: 4
  • Total number of submissions to Highlights group in 2018: 10
    • Highlights: 4
    • High Five: 3
    • Hello: 3
  • Total number of submissions to miscellaneous literary magazines: 16

Intended audience

  • Submissions for children: 25
  • Submissions for adults: 13

Number of submissions by month

  • January: 12
  • February: 13
  • March: 2
  • April: 0
  • May: 3
  • June: 1
  • July: 5
  • August: 2
  • September: 0
  • October: 0
  • November: 0
  • December: 0

Acceptances and rejections

  • Acceptances: 7
  • Rejections: 30
  • No reply: 1

Rejections by type

  • Form rejections: 27
  • Personal rejections: 3

Longest response time

9 months, 21 days (rejection with invitation to revise and resubmit)

Shortest response time

One hour (acceptance)

Accepted pieces

  • “Iggy Flint” (poem) | Forthcoming in Cricket
  • “Changeling” (flash fiction | Read it here at Enchanted Conversations Magazine
  • “Still Don’t” (tweet) | Read it here at Nanoism
  • “If Geese Could Spell” (poem)| Forthcoming in Highlights High Five
  • “Giraffe Cord-keeper” (craft) | Forthcoming in Highlights
  • “Dashiell’s Dress” (fiction) | Forthcoming in Spider
  • “Chalk Dust” (poem) | Forthcoming in Highlights Hello

Lessons learned

  • It takes a long time to hear back from magazine publishers.
  • It takes even longer to actually be published.
  • I am best at keeping New Year’s resolutions during the first two months of the year.
  • Having a job where I need to be at work all day really affects how much writing and submitting I accomplish.
  • I must have thick skin because REJECTION HURTS.
  • BUT SERIOUSLY, WHY DON’T THEY LOVE ME?
  • MY PARENTS THOUGHT THAT PIECE WAS REALLY NICE, THOUGH.
  • Acceptance eases the bitter sting of the aforementioned rejections…but only a little.
  • Writing for children’s magazines is not necessarily the way to garner fame and fortune.
  • (Especially fortune.)
  • I still don’t actually know what I’m doing.
  • But I think, having reviewed the numbers, that I can safely say that I met my 2018 writing resolution.

What should my writing resolution for 2019 be?

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Four Funerals and a Wedding

Well, these last few days have been quite thrilling.

Why, you may be asking, is your life so filled with thrill? Is it the fresh wainscoting that Dylan applied behind the stove? Are you elated by that random guy on a four wheeler who is driving through all of the snowdrifts on your residential road? Could it be that you bought new soap and now your hands smell nice?

NO.

(Well, my hands do smell nice. Like apple and cloves. Thanks, new soap.)

But here’s the good news: I had a poem accepted by Highlights High Five!

I took my New Year’s resolution of writing for children quite seriously, and since January I’ve sent out many, many stories, poems, rebuses, and action rhymes to various children’s publications. This acceptance followed four swift rejections, right when I was beginning to think that I should probably just cut my losses and become an accountant.

I’m so relieved that A. my writing is worthwhile, and B. I don’t have to be responsible for anyone’s finances. I mean, I can barely handle my own finances. A few weeks ago, I found a five dollar bill on a walk and spent it on a container of no-spill bubbles.

In any case, I’ll keep you updated on my poem. It’s been purchased, but I have no guarantee of publication date, so it could be ages before I see it in print.

I’m a patient person, though. After all, I waited a full week before deciding to buy those bubbles.

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P.S. I have never seen Four Weddings and a Funeral, but the reversing of the title worked for my rejection/acceptance metaphor (on a surface level, anyway). I probably shouldn’t draw comparisons between my writing and movies I’ve never watched, but what can I say? I like to live dangerously. That’s why I’ll be having TWO pieces of cake for lunch.

Changeling

It’s been about a month since I last posted, and that seems like a very long span of time, but in the writing world, it’s nothing. A month could be a single page of writing. Or an entire novel. Or thirty days of submitting, submitting, submitting and crossing fingers to ward off rejections.

(I’m in that last camp. I’ll let you know how the finger-crossing goes.)

Somewhere amidst all of that writing and waiting and writing some more, I managed to have a flash fiction piece published over at Enchanted Conversation Magazine. You may be interested in it if you like fairies, people who’ve fallen out of trees, or bacon.

Click here to read “Changeling.”

And now, back to waiting…

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