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August 26, 2009


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I submitted in mid-August and got an offer from a second tier school that then I expedited and got another offer from a better ranked second tier school. That doesn't expire for another week-plus. I got a bunch of rejections quickly, but it's slowed this week. Lots of schools said they were looking and would get back to me in the time I requested.


Aspiring law prof here; I bucked the trend and submitted third week of July; got a lower tier acceptance, which I expedited, then got a W&L top-40 journal offer last week (after two weeks of steady rejections, 2-4 per day). Rejections seem to have tapered off this week.


I sent out two pieces, both around August 1. One was a short (3,500 word) essay that I only sent to selected "lower tier" reviews on the theory that I've never had success, except in one special instance, of placing a short piece with a top 100 review. It placed fairly quickly with a short acceptance date, and nobody else bit on the expedite request.

The second was a more traditional long article (28,000 words +). It went out to Top 100 and a select number of specialty journals at top 15 schools. It's gotten a fair number of rejections, no offers, but seems to be under review a lot of places (based on receipt notices from ExpressO).


Article went out a week ago; one third tier acceptance, and one by a specialty journal. Have expedited and gotten some rejections (which, BTW, are appreciated; better to get a polite rejection than never hear anything). Still time to see if anyone further up the chain accepts. I was surprised by how many reviews are closed already.


Sent out early August, had two acceptances within 24 hours (one from a 2nd tier, one from a 4th tier). A few more acceptances along the way and some rejections; however, I've not heard anything from a surprising number of journals (despite follow-up emails). With my deadline looming, I'm a bit nervous at the silence from so many journals -- I'm thinking maybe I submitted too early.

Jacqui L.

Thanks for all the comments so far. A colleague of mine just submitted a piece over the weekend and almost immediately received an offer from a top second tier journal. Another colleague had a couple of offers from high second tier/low first tier journals in the last week or so. I get the feeling that a lot of the top tier general journals are either full or slow this fall. A lot of people have been saying that, rather than rejections, they have simply heard nothing from a lot of these journals - whether that means they're busy reviewing or they're full is anybody's guess.


Sent mid-August. Two offers (second-tier general, top 20 specialty) within five days; two more (second-tier general) since. Submitted to roughly 90 journals, withdrew from about a dozen, and have yet to hear anything at all from about 60. Nearly complete silence this past week.


When is the "end" of the fall submission season? Why are law review editors so reluctant to contact/update the submittors? Just wondering...

Jacqueline Lipton

I have had offers well into September in the past. And I think I may even have had the odd inquiry in October about whether a piece was still available or not. I guess if faculty are still sending out pieces now, the window must be open for a little longer. I'd be interested to hear from law review editors if any are reading this. I have some contacts who are law review editors this year who I know are reading articles at the moment.


I am an aspiring law prof. Submitted August 3rd to the 81 of the top 100 identified in ExpressO as accepting submissions. Received first offer from third tier about 10 days ago, expedited and got three more offers from second tier general law reviews. Received 18 rejections (mostly within a week of submitting) and radio silence from the others.

As this was my first time submitting an article, I'd love to hear thoughts on effective strategies for submitting, expediting, etc. from experienced profs.

anona profa

submitted last Monday. have 4 rejections and no offers.

Jacqueline Lipton

I'd love to hear effective strategies for submitting, expediting etc as well. I've been doing this for 8 or so years now and have never managed to make much sense of it. People seem to submit at all different times in the season and it doesn't seem to bear much relation to where they finally place. It is interesting that so many people this season haven't heard anything at all from journals other than a handful of rejections. I'm hearing the same thing over and over in the last few weeks about this. Seems a little unusual to me.


Recent graduate / clerk. I used LexOpus, but most of the journals I selected did not agree to participate in LexOpus at all (which wasn't clear from LexOpus). Zero response from Lex Opus. I heard from a friend who is an EIC at a secondary journal at T14 school that they are responding to every LexOpus submission with a note saying to submit it some other way.

I had three offers, two from tier 4 and one from tier 3. All from regular old emailing a submission in.

yet another anon

How are folks here defining "tiers"? Are you going by U.S. News law school rankings? What about the W&L law journal rankings? Sometimes these are very far apart. For instance, I have offers from general journals from a low tier-one school and from a tier-three school where both are about the same in the W&L rankings (not particularly high). There are definitely many cases where a lower-ranked school in U.S. News has a much more prominent law journal, at least going by citations and such. Chalk me up as another author who's relatively new to this process and confused just by trying to figure out which offers are best!


Yet Another Anon--I have published several times, and I find the rankings confusing/unhelpful as well. In the end I usually go with the USNWR rankings (forgive me, Brian Leiter!), or just ask colleagues which review they think is better...

Lawrence Cunningham

For those interested in this topic, I've posted on it and linked to this thread over at Concurring Opinions, which has interesting comments too.

Jacqui Lipton

Thanks, Lawrence. I saw your post last night and would indeed recommend it to others - very interesting stuff.

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