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Monday, January 26, 2015

Submission angsting: Spring 2015

The submission window is just about to open and we await Redyip's semi-annual return-- some journals already have announced they are accepting submissions. So let the angsting commence.

If you are an author or law review editor and want to share information about your submission experience to the law reviews, this is the place to do it. If you have questions about the process, this is the place to do it. Feel free to use the comments to share your information (and gripes or praise) about which journals you have heard from, which you have not, etc. Have at it. And do it reasonably nicely, pretty please.

Edit: To get to p.3 of comments, click here. To get to the end of comments, click here.

Posted by Howard Wasserman on January 26, 2015 at 09:31 AM in Howard Wasserman, Law Review Review, Teaching Law | Permalink


Anyone heard from Cardozo or George Mason recently? I submitted back in February, and haven't heard a peep. I've seen where some folks received dings from these law reviews. I'm wondering if that means I'll at least hear something - up or down - from these reviews or whether they've simply decided to ignore me? Getting kind of late in the season. I'm not optimistic.

Posted by: still_trying | Apr 8, 2015 11:16:36 AM

How difficult is it to get a good placement during the fall cycle after revising and resubmitting an article that struck out in the spring cycle?

Posted by: anon | Apr 7, 2015 11:50:58 PM

I'm also curious what people think about submitting in PDF versus Word. I submitted this cycle for the first time in PDF and no one asked for a Word copy. And it doesn't seem to have hurt me, compared to past cycles. So is the Word thing no longer true?

Posted by: c school prof | Apr 7, 2015 4:52:59 PM

Is it my imagination or is this season running later than past years?

Posted by: anon | Apr 7, 2015 3:32:55 PM

unranked prof: Your story is not uncommon. I've placed in top 10 flagships but remain convinced my best piece was one that couldn't climb higher than the T50-80 range. I think it's best to remember that placement does not equal quality and have some faith that the rest of the academy can discern quality (especially in your field) regardless of where a piece is published.

Posted by: T75 Prof | Apr 7, 2015 11:43:08 AM

a school prof, I think you bring up something that I struggled with this submission season. One of my submissions I thought was very novel, important, and theoretically interesting. I also did not get the placement I wanted. I topped out at a flagship law review ranked between 70 and 90. But after some reflection--and tons of rejections--I realize that my paper may not have actually been as novel as I originally thought. In actuality, my placement was probably pretty fair. I think one needs a ton of optimism in your idea to undergo the incredibly time and labor intensive chore of writing a law review paper. So at the end, I think it can be difficult to determine whether it's best to hold out for next year or acquiesce.

Posted by: b school prof | Apr 7, 2015 11:25:23 AM

Unranked Prof: If, indeed, your piece deserves a better placement, why didn't you wait ? It seems to me that what frustrates you is your own lack of patience. (I had to go through three submission seasons, before publishing a piece of mine in a Top-3 journal. At all cycles, except the last, all I got was endless rejections).

Posted by: a school prof | Apr 7, 2015 10:51:33 AM

Submitted on 3/6. Started with an unranked offer, then moved up to about 115, 95, and accepted with a school in the 65-70 range. Had one full board review at a top 20 school.

Although I think the placement is acceptable for a junior prof at an unranked school, I can't help but feel frustrated at the process. Before teaching, I published with a first tier main journal and a top specialty journal. Since accepting an academic position, I have actually had a harder time placing my work, even though I think it is better. I thought this was my most relevant and original piece, but the placement doesn't match up. Good luck to the rest of you.

Posted by: unranked prof | Apr 6, 2015 10:20:58 PM

I read earlier in this thread that one should submit a manuscript as a word doc so that law reviews can quickly determine its ratio between footnote content and above the line text. What's the sweet spot for that, or the preferred parameters? I feel I may have hurt myself including too much below the line content.

Posted by: b school prof | Apr 6, 2015 7:29:00 PM

And it is my understanding that even if journals such as Columbia are still open, the chances of receiving an offer now, out of the blue, are quite low.

Posted by: George | Apr 6, 2015 5:04:45 PM

It is my understanding that Alabama and Columbia (Essays) are closed until the fall.

Posted by: Bernard S. Sharfman | Apr 6, 2015 3:46:05 PM


Penn is still making offers. Also, received a ding from Columbia today off expedite.

Posted by: anonanu | Apr 6, 2015 3:14:10 PM

Ah yes, and congrats Magnolia!

Posted by: persephone | Apr 6, 2015 2:45:18 PM

So are Penn and Columbia still open? And am I right in quipping that NYU basically doesn't send rejections?

A comprehensive list of places that have been reported to be closed would be great...

Posted by: persephone | Apr 6, 2015 2:42:22 PM

Dings from U Chicago and NW off expedite today.

Posted by: anonanu | Apr 6, 2015 2:21:05 PM

Top 25 offer. 3/2 submission. 3/23 expedite. I've gotten 30 rejections and 4 "we're no longer reviewing" notifications, leaving me alive at 6 places. I just expedited, but I can't say I'm super hopeful places are still reading. Anyone hear anything from Northwestern or Chicago lately?

Posted by: Magnolia | Apr 6, 2015 12:12:42 PM

How often do board reviews turn into offers? So far I am 0/1. But three more are coming up.

Posted by: anon | Apr 6, 2015 11:34:46 AM

I received a top 60 offer of publication for my article, "Activist Hedge Funds in a World of Board Independence: Creators or Destroyers of Long-Term Value?," http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2576408 . The offer was made on April 3rd, submitted on March 25th.

Posted by: Bernard S. Sharfman | Apr 6, 2015 11:05:13 AM

Indiana ding off recent expedite.

Posted by: Anon | Apr 5, 2015 10:20:23 PM

UNC is full.

Posted by: anon | Apr 5, 2015 10:07:52 PM

Stanford ding today after 4/1 expedite request.

Posted by: Anon | Apr 5, 2015 7:13:41 PM

Any top journals still reviewing? Some intel?

Posted by: George | Apr 5, 2015 7:08:02 PM

Angsters, would welcome your thoughts on a survey for law review editors, here: http://prawfsblawg.blogs.com/prawfsblawg/2015/04/a-law-review-survey.html

Posted by: BDG | Apr 5, 2015 4:16:02 PM

sharing?: The practice is not very common overall, although I agree with T75 Prof that it is more common in the higher-ranked journals. I would not worry about it much at all.

Posted by: ICHTY | Apr 5, 2015 1:19:57 PM

sharing?: It's a good question and tough to pin down, but generally, I think it's safe to say the practice is more common as you move up the USN rankings. Breaking the T100 into thirds, my experience is it is typical in the top 1/3, not uncommon in the next 1/3, and rare in the bottom 1/3.

I wouldn't let it freak you out. Profs understand that meaningful revisions occur from draft to publication. So long as the thesis and argument are generally sound I would think you're in good shape.

Posted by: T75 Prof | Apr 5, 2015 11:25:12 AM

sharing?: It's a good question and tough to pin down, but generally, I think it's safe to say the practice is more common as you move up the USN rankings. Breaking the T100 into thirds, my experience is it is typical in the top 1/3, not uncommon in the next 1/3, and rare in the bottom 1/3.

I wouldn't let it freak you out. Profs understand that meaningful revisions occur from draft to publication. So long as the thesis and argument are generally sound I would think you're in good shape.

Posted by: T75 Prof | Apr 5, 2015 11:25:11 AM

Can any of the professors in the audience speculate on how often law reviews seek faculty input when selecting articles? I submitted one piece this cycle that was still pretty rough just to see if it would get any interest. A colleague's comment now has me concerned that some journals might share it with others in my field when deciding whether to make on offer. While that practice might actually benefit me for placement purposes, I am not sure I would want the piece to serve as my first impression with certain people.

Posted by: sharing? | Apr 5, 2015 10:29:53 AM

Ethics ding. (Submitted 10/8/1956)

Posted by: Philosopher | Apr 5, 2015 10:26:41 AM

Maybe I should have my students write me letters explaining why their brief should get one of the 5=6 "A" grades I can give out and still meet the curve.

Posted by: wow | Apr 5, 2015 10:00:12 AM

Anon -- I would probably take the flagship, although I think it is pretty close to a wash. The question for most hiring committees who read it will be whether it is any good -- and any potential difference in prestige between the two will not make a committee more or less likely to interview you, in my experience (8 years at a 50ish school, and on our appointments committee twice).

Posted by: ICHTY | Apr 5, 2015 7:20:11 AM

I would prefer the TT2 flagship over the TCP TT 3 tier. From my experience (publishing from mid-90's) a 56 ranked top 4 secondary Journal through a 2 tier expedite HSY took me nowhere...

Posted by: Ed. | Apr 5, 2015 5:28:57 AM

What would you take:

A top-5 school's secondary journal (not international law, not tax law) or a flagship journal of a law school ranked between 65 and 85?

Both journals have similar citation statistics but the flagship journal at the lower ranked school is a little better.

I don't have a TT job and plan to go on the AALS in 1-2 years.

Posted by: Anon | Apr 5, 2015 2:31:18 AM

"Uh, didn't I already send you a cover letter?"

Posted by: A | Apr 4, 2015 11:22:23 PM

How could you possibly know why a journal should prefer your article over others (aside from bias reasons)? Is the journal sending you copies of the other articles yours is competing with?

Posted by: TheViewFromOutside | Apr 4, 2015 8:09:42 PM


Posted by: Prof. | Apr 4, 2015 7:15:22 PM

Prof - Is t3, HSY or is it tier 3?

Posted by: Anonprof | Apr 4, 2015 7:05:57 PM

Prof - Is t3, HSY or is it tier 3?

Posted by: Anonprof | Apr 4, 2015 7:05:42 PM

Hey there,

I have just received a notification of full board review from a t3 journal, with a request for a 'letter which will convince the board why should your article be prefered over others'. Is anyone familiar with such procedure? I have never wrote a letter of convincing' . Thanks.

Posted by: Prof. | Apr 4, 2015 4:46:17 PM

First jump into general law review submission pool in a few years. Good but quirky article. Submitted very narrowly in fall (top 30) with no offers. Submitted to about 60 journals 3/10 and another 50 3/14. Seven offers in two weeks (one top 35, two good specialties, 4 journals between 70-100) plus a full read at a top 14. Much to my surprise, accepted one of the specialties at unanimous advice of experts in field. Generally happy with result, continued amusement at the process.

Posted by: Mid-career | Apr 4, 2015 12:01:12 PM

I changed the names -- I changed some of the substance, too. Mostly I changed the framing, and did complete rewrites of the abstracts and intros. I circulated it to more people, got more comments, etc. But the articles overall did not change much.

Posted by: ICHTY | Apr 4, 2015 9:50:23 AM


Did you change the names of your articles?

Posted by: Anon | Apr 4, 2015 9:29:34 AM


Here's to hoping that the next post will let us know you got the Yale offer.


Thanks for the rundown, and congratulations on a great season.

Posted by: AnonProf | Apr 4, 2015 8:35:12 AM

My round is done. For what it is worth, here is how it played out.

I submitted two papers, and both had struck out in previous rounds.

Paper No. 1 (previously submitted in Spring '14, with full reads at a couple of T20, but no offers): Submitted to T50 on 2/18. After about two weeks, offer from T40 journal; expedited to T20; offers from two more T20, and then expedited and received offers from two T10. Accepted one of the T10 offers on 3/8.

Paper No. 2 (previously submitted in Fall '14, with a full read from one T20, but no offers): Submitted to T75 on 2/25. After several weeks of silence, offer from T40 journal on 3/30. Expedited and received full read at Northwestern but no offer. Happily accepted today.

This is the first round I have submitted multiple articles. Very happy with the result. But for those who have not received offers, first thing is that there is still some movement; second thing is that resubmitting in another round is not the worst thing, if you are not under pressure to get it accepted in the short term.

Good luck everyone.

Posted by: ICHTY | Apr 3, 2015 7:12:30 PM

Vandy is full

Posted by: anon | Apr 3, 2015 5:48:27 PM

Davis ding.

Posted by: anon | Apr 3, 2015 3:30:28 PM

I have found, to my great pleasure, that, once on their radar (faster via expedite) the T14 journals are very diligent about rejecting me. In my limited experience (2010 on), it is the T25 down to the bottom that regularly offer silence. At the bottom, I choose to take it as a compliment. They just assume that my piece is not really available to them, so why waste the time. (BTW, this is not true to me. I am now a firm believer in submitting broadly, right down to the bottom (sometimes), because I don't know where I would publish until I am in the market with my product.) On the rare occasion I get a full board read from a T14, I have also been informed (sometimes before and sometimes after) of that, as well. I prefer to know, but also prefer it after if I am rejected.

Until this cycle, though, I never submitted to HYS because... if I am lucky to get a T14 board read, it only follows. But, this paper (which just eeked into the T14) has been really well-received, especially by people who regularly publish in HYS. So, I figured my long shot was not just a waste of time. I am happy I did. My paper is clearly T20 material (taking into account all the legit/illegit factors + luck, without endorsing them), but NOT T10. And submitting to the top was the only way to feel 100% happy with the placement (YLJ is the only place ranked above my placement that is still considering). So, I KNOW that YLJ is going to reject it. I KNOW it. But, I need them to do it. That blasted "Under Consideration" status notification is making me batty! Because, even though I KNOW they are going to reject my paper... I see my friend's paper with my name in the star footnote on the front page of the YLJ website and think, "I'm as good as that person"(even if I'm not). And, Harvard said no and Stanford said no and Chicago said no. But, Yale says "under consideration." And, what if....

And that, my friends, is just one more reason the angsting thread exists. For my dream of YLJ. For my what if.

Posted by: DreamingofYLJ | Apr 3, 2015 1:54:55 PM

Offers are still coming! Today I received one from a school just outside of the top 50.

Posted by: servingacademicrealness | Apr 3, 2015 1:04:26 PM


I received a recent ding from NYU and offer from Wash U. I submitted 3/27. Interested to hear that UCLA and Texas are closed -- sure would be nice if they told Scholastica.

Posted by: anonanu | Apr 3, 2015 8:34:11 AM

anon too,
that's very reassuring. thank you and congratulations!

Posted by: anonanon | Apr 3, 2015 8:00:48 AM

Chicago! Columbia! Virginia! Poke. Wake up! My amazing piece sits on your desks.

Posted by: Prof. Sadness | Apr 2, 2015 5:18:31 PM

I'd go flagship as well.

Posted by: Anonprof | Apr 2, 2015 5:00:45 PM

@ anon 3:39 - I'd go with the flagship. But that's just me.

Posted by: Another IP anon | Apr 2, 2015 4:13:09 PM

For a young aspiring IP prof who is in practice, would it better to publish in a T20 IP specialty or a T100 flagship? I am happy with these results as I don't have letterhead but I'm not sure which way to go.

Posted by: anon | Apr 2, 2015 3:39:34 PM

Thanks, persephone.

Posted by: still_trying | Apr 2, 2015 2:12:06 PM

Texas is closed and reopening mid-July. UCLA is closed and reopening in the summer (can't remember what month the email said). I received a ding from NYU last week.

I also haven't heard a word from USC or Wash U on my 3/2 submission, and I have expedited twice since then.

Posted by: Magnolia | Apr 2, 2015 1:55:24 PM

Highly Depressed - last year I received offers from UC Davis and Fordham in mid-April, not off an expedite. I was highly surprised, but it can happen! Don't lose hope! (I had submitted between 2/26 and 3/5 and heard nothing but rejections until then).

Posted by: anon too | Apr 2, 2015 1:27:08 PM

That was in response to still_trying.

Posted by: persephone | Apr 2, 2015 1:04:15 PM

Has anyone heard anything - good, bad, or in between - from USC, Washington (St. Louis), or NYU?

Posted by: HateTheWait | Apr 2, 2015 1:04:09 PM

I initially submitted in early March (3/4), expedited three times two off T100 one off a T20 specialty. Most recent expedite was this Tuesday, I also expedited last Friday.

Given the rankings of those offers, though, could very well have nothing to do with my expedites.

Posted by: persephone | Apr 2, 2015 1:02:43 PM

Stanford ip is active. From the rest I did not hear.

Posted by: ioi | Apr 2, 2015 12:51:15 PM

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