When summer rolls around, many writers put away their literary research and put on their sunglasses and hiking shoes. But before you put your publishing goals on pause, Writer’s Relief wants to debunk a common publishing industry myth and show you how summer submissions to literary agents and literary magazine editors can offer key advantages to smart writers.
The Publishing Industry’s Biggest Myth: Literary Agents And Literary Magazine Editors Don’t Read During The Summer—Right?
Like many good stories, the myth that the publishing industry slows down during the summer is loosely based on a couple of facts. First, literary journals that are closely affiliated with universities tend not to read during summer months. Second, literary agents and book editors are sometimes given Friday afternoons “off” during the summer in order to work from home.
But claiming that the publishing industry closes down during the summer is completely wrong. Of the thousands of literary journals, only a small percentage stop reading during the summer months. Plus, with today’s technology, literary agents and editors can easily work remotely on days when they’re not in the office.
We’ve been helping authors successfully submit their writing during the summer for over twenty-three years. And contrary to what you might expect, we’ve seen real advantages for writers who keep submitting even when the weather gets hot.
How This Publishing Industry Myth Can Actually Improve Your Acceptance Odds
While everyone else is going on vacation and slowing down their submissions, here’s how you can advance your writing career.
Take advantage of smaller slush piles. Even though the majority of literary journal editors and literary agents don’t take breaks during the summer, many writers do. And that’s great news for writers who want their submissions to stand out and get a leg up on the competition. Make the most of summer submission doldrums by putting your writing front and center on agents’ and editors’ desks.
Put yourself in a great position by reaching readers when they are less busy. When editors and literary agents aren’t stressed, they may be more inclined to accept work from a writer that requires a little polishing and editing. In the autumn, when everyone is submitting, agents and editors will be inundated with plenty of great choices—yours will be one of hundreds…maybe thousands. And getting an acceptance may prove as elusive as catching your own unicorn.
The best time to try is right now. Procrastination is a tricky thing in a writer’s life; sometimes, a writer will put off making summer submissions as a strategy for getting ahead, when really it’s just procrastination in disguise. Don’t wait. Send out submissions now to create momentum that will carry you into the fall.
Help is available for you TODAY. Some writers pause their submission process during the summer because they would rather be soaking up the sun on vacation than spending long, frustrating hours making submissions. (Totally understandable!) But our team here at Writer’s Relief is standing by to help authors make submissions right now and all summer long. Our clients go on vacation; we keep their publishing goals on track.
And If You Still Want To Take A Vacation From Your Submission Strategy…
If you’re not submitting this summer, we recommend that you find a way to keep your career momentum going by maintaining your focus. Use the summer months to revise your manuscript, read books that inspire you, boost your marketing and promo outreach, or research. Use the summertime to put yourself in a good position to take advantage of the autumn publishing rush.
Question: Do you tend to scale back your submissions during the summer?