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Triple Tracking Method

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Tracking Submissions

It is very important to track your submissions. You will want to know where they have been sent, how long they have been there and what response they receive.
There are many ways to do this. The triple tracking method is very easy to use and allows you to track both how your manuscript itself does and how you fare with a particular publication.

Triple Tracking

You will want to keep one general list. Even if you do not use the triple tracking method, you should at least keep a general submission sheet. Take a sheet of notebook paper or open your favorite spreadsheet on your computer. Create columns for
  • Submission No#(Sub No# for short)
  • Date Submitted
  • Title
  • Publication
  • Response Date
  • Results

The Submission No# is the number of times the particular piece of writing has been submitted, if this the first submission for this piece, the Sub No# would be 1.
Date Submitted is the date you sent the manuscript to the publication.
Title is the name of your manuscript.
Publication is the title of the publication.
Response Date is the date you received a response from the publication.
Results or response is the kind of response you received, which can be anything from form rejection to published. We like the following codes for response:
  • R for rejection, form letter style.
  • PR for a more personal rejection.
  • VPR for a very personal rejection.
  • NR for no response at all. It happens.
  • RW for a request to rewrite the work.
  • P for published, probably with exclamation marks after it!

Click here for an example of the general submission sheet!

Why isn't a general submission sheet enough?

It is, but if you want to be really careful and statistically oriented you should use two more. Each is very similar to the general submission sheet.
One is for tracking the results of each of manuscript individually and the other is for tracking the results with each publication.
The sheets look almost identical to the general submission sheet.

For example, say you had the story, Cool story, from above. You would title the sheet, Cool story, and you would track just the submissions for it. You would keep Cool Story's submission sheet in a file with a copy of the story itself and whatever other information you wanted.
Example of tracking individual manuscripts

Also, for each publication you would keep a submission sheet. The title of the sheet would be the publication and you would keep a list and the results of any manuscript you submitted to this publication in a file along with responses you received from the publication, any guidelines information you had, etc.
Example of tracking individual publications

Overall, the last two are not necessary, but if you plan on doing a lot of submitting they are a good idea. You can get by on the general submission sheet alone, but you would get really confused without any kind of submission tracking whatsoever.


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