What is bad submission etiquette, you ask? Here are a few of the things we feel fall into the "please don't" category of submission etiquette:
We have submission guidelines for a reason, and it's a bad look if it's clear you haven't even glanced at them. Emailing us your submission when we use a submission manager for a reason is one thing (its poor etiquette, but not quite in the bad territory) but emailing us a submission that doesn't even address us as a magazine or have any other content other than your submission is embarrassing. We are not required to look at your work, so please don't treat us like we are by not even taking the time to write out an email! If you want others to consider your work, treat them with respect by taking the time to read through the submission guidelines and FOLLOWING them. We appreciate it greatly!
SUBMITTING UN-EDITED WORK
Apricity only accepts work that has no need for any major changes. We believe that if a piece isn't where it needs to be when it's submitted, it isn't ready for publication. It takes too much time for us to go through and edit things with a fine tooth comb when simply, it is your job as the writer & submitter to make sure your work is completely ready for publication. Submitting work that's littered with unintentional grammar and syntax errors looks sloppy and unprofessional on your part, and we won't accept it purely for that reason alone. We want to read your work and experience it for what it is, not get bogged down by all the obvious errors. Before you submit your work to any lit mag, take some time to look through it for errors. Better yet, have someone else look through it! It can be hard to see errors in your own work because you know what you're trying to say, so take that extra step to make your work one step closer to being publishable.
REQUESTING CHANGES TO ALREADY ACCEPTED WORK
If we didn't like what you submitted the first time around, we wouldn't have accepted it for publication! Please don't email us requesting to make substantial changes to the work that we have already accepted. What you submit to us initially is what we review, and we don't have the time to review a new edit of something that should have been completed upon submission. If there is something minor that needs to be changed like altering the title, feel free to let us know. Just don't send us a totally new draft of something we already liked enough to publish.
ANGRY RESPONSE EMAILS TO REJECTION LETTERS
Our submission decisions aren't personal, and we do our best to be as subjective as possible about what we choose to publish. However, we are of course subjective creatures, and sometimes what we feel isn't publishable at this time may be different than how you feel about it. Please don't take our rejection letters (we don't even like calling them that!) personally, because they aren't personal at all! Responding to our rejection with a seething email is definitely not going to make us change our minds about your submission. It will just make us think twice about working with you in the future, because rejection letters are a fact of life as writers, and you need to figure out a good way of dealing with them if you're going to be a successful writer. If you have questions about why we didn't accept something, you're welcome to email us at email@example.com and ask why we made the decision we did.
In short, there are a lot of different factors that make up bad submission etiquette. To make sure you don't fall into any of these categories, read through the submission guidelines of the lit mag you're interested in BEFORE submitting your work. Note their submission periods, what types of work they publish, and how to submit your work (email, submissions manager, snail mail, etc). I promise, both you and the lit mag you submit to will greatly appreciate it.
Questions about submitting your work to Apricity? Please refer to our submissions page.