For my Obessive Duotrope Trackers …

Often a writer, when lamenting about a story stuck at a market and confessing to obsessively tracking Duotrope, will hear advice along the lines of, “Just keep writing.  Ignore it and write another story and submit that one.”  The first time a writer hears this, it sounds reasonable.  The fiftieth time, you just want to strangle the person.  The advice is equivalent to the dentist telling you to floss your teeth. Yeah, I get it, can we move on please?

So here’s some practical advice on the matter by way of James, a friend of mine.  If you belong to Duotrope you can set up a service at to send you emails or texts or whatever, when someone updates their submission on Duotrope.  For example, I currently have stories under consideration at Fantasy and Science Fiction and Orson Scott Card’s Intergalactic Medicine Show.  Every time they send out a rejection or acceptance and Duotrope is updated I get an email telling me of it within fifteen minutes.  This frees me from having to obsessively check Duotrope every day and try and discern patterns.  I set up my email to automatically sort them, and now I have a history of it going beyond the thirty days that Duotrope currently logs.

It’s very easy to use.  It’s all done with button clicks.   I set mine up on my smart phone in less than a minute.  Here’s how:

1. Sign up.
2. Click “Create Recipe”
3. Click on the blue “This”
4. Click on the Yellow icon “Feed”
5. Click on “New Feed Item”
6. Navigate in a separate window to the RSS feed of the market you’re interested in.
7. Copy the URL from that page into the box “Feed URL” and click “Create Trigger”
8. Click on the blue “That”
9. Select “email” or “gmail”
10. Open a separate window and open your email account.
11. It will ask you to activate email account, do so.  The email client will throw a warning; I was ok with it.
12. When on the page “Choose an action,” select “send an email”
13. Enter the email address to send the update to.  I changed the title of the email to say the market name “Writers of the Future Update” and left the body of the email alone.  I didn’t put in a URL attachment.
14. Click “Create Action”
15. I recommend putting in a description so you can tell all the different markets apart.  Mine are just “Writers of the Future Duotrope Update,” so I can tell them apart.
16. Enjoy!

Disclaimer: Keep the recipes private.  Duotrope is a paid site and part of the user agreement is that you will not make the RSS feeds public.  I found this out the hard way after I made one public in an effort to be helpful.
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