As you know, Bob, Duotrope began charging authors for its service and content as of Jan 1. I chose not to sign up, even though the amount they’re asking is exactly what I voluntarily paid when paying was optional.
Why pay when it wasn’t required? I figured it was worth some amount to a whole bunch of people who would find it a financial burden to contribute, so I chipped in more than what I felt was my share in order to hopefully keep it accessible to everyone. Now that the benefit would accrue only to me, the cost is totally not worth it.
I’m extremely happy with this decision now that I’ve gone a couple of weeks without Duotrope.
I don’t miss the submission tracking–I have a spreadsheet for that anyway, which is pretty epic, since I am an Excel geek courtesy of years of corporate life.
I don’t miss the market listings–I have a market list of my own, on which I’ve ranked the various pro markets according to all kinds of personal factors, and so far, I haven’t submitted outside that list except for anthologies, which I usually find out about through word of mouth anyway.
I especially don’t miss the response time statistics. For the few months I used Duotrope, I was playing this unintentional yet sadistic game with myself: watching the response times of markets where I had a submission in, trying to figure out if I’d made it past the first readers, trying to read into these numbers some indication of my worth.
That, in case you were wondering, is a colossal waste of time.
I have as many submissions out right now as ever (not many) and yet, since I’ve withdrawn from Duotrope, I haven’t spent any time at all wondering who’s read them yet and how long it’s going to be until I hear back.
Instead, I’ve written a new story.