The Journey of a Woman’s Weekly Short Story – from arrival to publication

Last Friday I was lucky enough to be teaching at Woman’s Weekly’s offices in London with Fiction Editor, Gaynor Davies.  While I was there, I thought it would be very interesting to find out exactly what happens to our stories when they arrive. So if you have ever wondered what happened to your manuscript after you posted it – here is the journey of a Woman’s Weekly Short Story.

Woman's Weekly

Step One. All manuscripts are logged in date order and put in this cupboard.

The Manuscript Cupboard

Step Two. They are sorted out and read. If you have been published by Woman’s Weekly before they will be read ‘in house’. If you have not they will be sent out to two very experienced readers who Gaynor says she trusts with her life.

Step Three. If your story is a near miss or a possible it will be sent back to Clare for a second read.

Step Four. If Clare likes it, she will pass it to Gaynor Davies, fiction editor.

Step Five. If Gaynor likes it she will pass it to Diane Kenwood, the editor for a final read/approval. Which is hopefully followed by a yes.

Step Six. If it’s a yes, Clare will contact you by phone or email to tell you the good news.

Of course, a ‘no’ can happen at any stage of this process.  If it’s a ‘no’, you will have an email from Maureen Street.  Now it has been rumoured that Maureen Street doesn’t exist. That she is just the pseudonym or ‘fall guy’ if you like – the made-up person who sends the rejections.  I can confirm she does exist and she is a very very nice lady. Here she is with Gaynor.

Gaynor Davies (left) Maureen Street (right)

And here are the two desks where so many decisions regarding the fate of our stories are made 🙂

So now you know!


Gaynor's desk (closest) Maureen's desk (by window)

Gaynor's desk (closest) Maureen's desk (by window)



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