"I love being a writer.  What I can't stand is the paperwork."--Peter De Vries

"In preparing for battle I have always found that plans are useless, but planning is indispensable."
--Dwight D. Eisenhower

To keep yourself from having a great deal of trouble later in your career, creating a submissions-tracking system that is comprehensive and complete is imperative.  Don't get lazy about this.  Every time you send something out, record who, what, where, when, and why.  You might consider creating a database, if you are so inclined.

  • ADVICE. There are professional tracking systems on the market, which look to be fine.  But, you can do this.  You can do this and you must do this.
  • Tracking your submissions will help you in all sorts of ways.  It will be much easier to keep your vita up to date.  You'll have the seeds of a professional network in place--by this I mean that after awhile you will want to send more work to those places that have accepted you previously.  And you'll be able to have a real conversation with them, beginning with "I got a good response from people the last time you took something."  Finally, when you get your book accepted for publication--you've just won a huge national prize--and the press says they want you to write to each of these publications and get their okay for you to republish, you won't even break a sweat.