One Small Step: Submission Statistics

While I’m not going to be posting the final Table of Contents for a number of weeks yet, because of a turn the anthology has taken along the way, I can share some stats about the submissions I received for the forthcoming One Small Step anthology.

Total submissions received during open reading period = 86

Submissions by gender = 1 unknown, 58 female (60 in reality as two stories had female co-authors), 27 male. An interesting swing from the Epilogue open call last year – could be reflective of any number of factors, including that Epilogue was open internationally and a large proportion of the US submissions were from men.

While the anthology was only open to Australian authors, I received seven unsolicited submissions from non-Australian writers, including works from the UK, US, Canada and Italy. These were rejected unread.

9 stories were accepted in the first round of reading.

11 were held for second round reading. Of these, two were subsequently accepted.

66 were rejected in first round (including non-Australian submissions), for a total of 75 rejections and 11 acceptances.

Total approximate word count of submissions read: 368,591


4 thoughts on “One Small Step: Submission Statistics

  1. I’m trying to decide whether that’s a high or a low acceptance rate. A typical reasonably good peer-reviewed journal has an acceptance rate of around 30% — twice as many as you’ve accepted here. On the other hand, 99% of the submissions that journals receive are from highly trained people with proven track records in publishing (or highly trained PhD students working closely with mentors with proven track records), which I’d hope would make a difference. Hmm.

    How do these stats compare with your previous anthologies? Is there any correlation between your acceptance rate and critical review success?

    1. The stats for Epilogue were even lower. I accepted just 10 stories from a slushpool of 213 (actually, 11 were accepted, although one withdrew). I commissioned two further stories outside of the slush.

      I can’t think of any measurable way to consider correlation between acceptance rate and critical review success!

  2. How does word count relate to probability of acceptance? Did you accept a greater proportion of the longer or shorter stories?

    1. An interesting question! I did a quick and dirty crunch of those numbers (and please note, this won’t add up to the stats above as I didn’t include word counts for subs from overseas authors) and the results are below. I used to accept submissions of fewer than 2000 words but decided I wasn’t enjoyed the shorter stories, and that’s demonstrated again here even at the 2-3K count. Having said that, I’m not sure the numbers here are actually reflective of anything other than this was the length of the stories I liked – no point in people trying to shoehorn stories into certain lengths if that’s not the length the story needs to be, for my mind! And also, some of the word counts of accepted stories may change, during the editorial process, so while this was an interesting activity, I don’t think it’s terribly useful for people submitting stories 🙂

      Acceptances by word count
      0-3000 (lower limit was supposed to be 2000) = 0/22
      3000-3099 = 4/19
      4000-4999 = 1/11
      5000-5999 = 1/13
      6000-6999 = 1/5
      7000-7999 = 0/5
      8000-8999 = 2/4
      9000-9999 = 0/0
      10000-10999 = 1/2
      11000-12000 = 1/2

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