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Author Topic: xword submission questions  (Read 2285 times)


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xword submission questions
« on: September 30, 2011, 09:41:17 PM »
I have a few questions/comments:

What is the protocol on waiting for an answer from one editor before submitting to another?  Can you simultaneously submit puzzles to different venues and tell one editor who accepted your puzzle that another has already accepted it?

I recently sent the NYT 2 daily submissions with titles and THEN read in Patrick Berry's Dummies book that the NYT and LAT don't use puzzles with titles.  I had never noticed this before and it's not mentioned in any of the puzzle submission guidelines.  Shouldn't it be?  (at least 1 of the submitted puzzles needs the title)

Finally how long does it take on average to hear back from Will?  He will reply, won't he?, even with a rejection?



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Re: xword submission questions
« Reply #1 on: October 01, 2011, 06:26:41 PM »
I can answer some of the questions:

During the past year, responses from Will Shortz have come between two and three months after I've submitted a puzzle--usually closer to two.  That applies to both responses where the puzzles are politely declined and where they're accepted. I've always received a reply, sometimes from Will directly and sometimes from his assistant, Paula Gamache.

I'd agree that there is some useful information missing from the specification sheets of multiple publications. I sent a rebus puzzle to the LA Times and only discovered after receiving a response that they never run rebuses.

I haven't heard an official statement about concurrent submissions of the same puzzle to multiple editors. I've avoided it thus far, figuring that I'd rather wait a little longer to have a puzzle accepted by a second editor after an initial rejection than bother any of the editors by doing something that could at least irritate them. I don't imagine it wouldn't bother any of them to be asked about their feelings on the topic, though.

Best of luck on the puzzles you've submitted.



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Re: xword submission questions
« Reply #2 on: October 01, 2011, 09:17:01 PM »
Great answers, Caleb.  Very helpful.  Thanks a bunch!  --Alan


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Re: xword submission questions
« Reply #3 on: October 04, 2011, 12:46:57 PM »
Don't submit a puzzle to two different places at the same time.  Imagine that two editors both wanted to accept your puzzle.  Editor A publishes it while Editor B is still working on it or has it in the pipeline for future publication.  Editor B notices that your puzzle was published in Editor A's paper, and now he has to scramble to drop your puzzle and replace it with another one in a short period of time.  It creates an unnecessary burden and is frankly bad etiquette.  While your intention may have been to increase your chances that one of them will accept it, it comes off as though you're working behind both editor's backs.

If you're submitting to the NYT, wait to hear back from Will and see if he declines it before you decide to submit the puzzle anywhere else.  And yes, either he or Paula Gamache will get back to you after 2-3 months or so.


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