Novel/Short Story Submission Spreadsheet

I was looking for a tool to track my novel submissions today, and I stumbled on this nifty little spreadsheet hacked together by Matt Bell. But I’m one of those guys who likes my stuff just so, and you know, with a little bit of color to keep my tiny brain interested. So I tweaked it and added a couple little things.

A nice feature of Matt’s sheet is a counter that tabulates how long your submission has been in a particular agent’s (or publisher’s) slush pile — it tallies days until you put in a response date. Handy, but a bit dry.

So I added color-coding for the days your piece has been out for submission: Less than 2 months, green (I’d consider that an “active” submission), 2-4 months, yellow (still active but getting dusty), 4+ months, red (probably mostly dead and time to resubmit). This gives you a nice idea at a glance for how many “active” subs you have out.

I also added a “days since last submission” counter, also color-coded, which goes yellow after two weeks and red after a month — a sharp, at-a-glance indicator for whether you might want to send out some fresh subs.

Mmm, subs.

Writing Spreadsheet

All the bells and whistles should work for up to 150 submissions. In the spirit of Matt’s offering, I’ve made the end result downloadable and shareable, in the hopes you might find it useful.

And it’s all on the ubiquitously useful and convenient GoogleDocs, so, you know.

You can find it here.

3 thoughts on “Novel/Short Story Submission Spreadsheet

  1. Hi Mr Pavowski, thank you so much for the upload!

    Just got a couple of questions. In the Responded column, what should I write there? When I renamed it to Status and put my own value, the Days in Pile column showed error.

    And then, how do you extend the columns to be workable for more than 150 rows?


    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Sam! When you get a response from a publisher/agent, just drop the date of the response in that column and it should tabulate the total time your query sat in the “pile”, which may be useful information for you in the future if you think about submitting them again with a future project.

      With just about any spreadsheet, you can expand the “workable area” (the area that executes a formula or keeps a tally) by clicking in the bottom right of the area that holds the formula (on this spreadsheet, it’s the “G” column) and dragging that down for as many rows as you like. The cursor kinda turns into a crosshair when you’re on that corner.

      Hope that helps, and I hope the tool is useful to you!


      • Thank you. I figured it out after your comments and kinda added another color coded counter. I named it Days since Last Publication.

        It really helps. Thanks so much. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

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