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December 1, 2017

Turning Down a Nice Submission

The other day I received a nice submission for KIT.  The author had a remarkable 
bibliography, so I could tell the article was well-researched.  But there were multiple 
reasons why this piece was turned down.  

  • The manuscript was not formatted correctly and the contact information was missing.  Contact information must be present on the first page of a manuscript.  This is fairly standard for any magazine.  
  • The word count exceeded our limit.  We state in our guidelines that we'd like articles to run about 500 words.  Kids are more engaged with shorter pieces.  Going fifty words over the limit is not egregious, but 200 words is simply too long. 
  • The Flesh Kincaid readability tool measured the piece at seventh grade level.  The range of our audience is from first to six grade.  To achieve a readability score more suitable to KIT, writers can reduce the number of compound sentences, explain complex concepts in simple terms, and use grade-appropriate vocabulary. 
  • The subject of the article was too mature for young readers.  This is where writers have to put themselves in the shoes of kids and figure out what they would like to read and know.  For instance, we believe an article that discusses animal reproduction is  not appropriate for our magazine.   

It's very possible if this writer had taken a look at our guidelines, a rejection could have been avoided.  

But, all is not lost for this writer.  In this case, we provided reasons for the rejection, not the typical "the piece is not a good fit for us."  And this writer has the opportunity to submit again.  KIT believes that every writer deserves a second chance.  We promote writers and encourage them to perfect their submissions.  It is our mission to help writers succeed in reaching their publication dreams.  







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