A Rookie Mistake

A Rookie Mistake

When I wrote and shared my first Letter to the Editor of The New York Times last week, I was unaware that they will not publish letters which have already been published somewhere else, including on the web. I realize now that may have been a significant factor, a long with the length (550 words), in their choice not to share my letter (or even an excerpt from it) when they published these responses to the original op/ed “My Abortion, at 23 Weeks,” this weekend: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/06/29/opinion/the-wrenching-story-of-her-abortion.html.

Though what they chose to publish does cover various points-of-view on this issue, I am disappointed that they didn’t more thoroughly show the writer had a third option, perinatal hospice and palliative care.

I chose to follow-up directly with another letter/email, but will not share the details of what I sent until I give it some time and see if I hear back from them. It was only when I sent my follow-up email, that I received this automated response, which did not come after I sent my original Letter to the Editor last week:

Thank you for your letter to The New York Times.

If your letter is selected for publication — in all editions (print and online) or only online — we will contact you within a week. We regret that because of the volume of letters received, we are not able to respond to all submissions, other than by this automated reply.

Here are some guidelines:

Letters should preferably be no longer than 150 words and may be shortened to fit allotted space. They must be exclusive to The Times (no prior submission to, or publication in, any other medium, including the Web). They should generally refer to an article that has appeared within the last seven days. We reserve the right to edit letters.

To be considered for publication, letters MUST include the writer’s name, address, current location (where you are writing from) and daytime and evening phone numbers at your current location (for verification, not for publication).

We generally do not publish more than one letter from the same writer within any 60-day period. (This applies to the daily letters page, but feel free to submit letters to the weekly sections.) If we select your letter for publication, you consent to our right to republish it, in any and all media, and to license third parties to publish it as well.

If you submit your contact information as a result of this automated reply, please re-send the letter with it. (In the subject line, please indicate the headline of the article you’re responding to, and delete “automated reply.’’)

Because of computer security concerns, we do NOT accept attachments; they will NOT be opened. Please resubmit your letter pasted into the body of an e-mail message.

For requests for corrections in news articles: nytnews@nytimes.com

Letters submitted for publication in other  sections may be sent directly to these addresses:
artsleis@nytimes.com (Arts & Leisure)
books@nytimes.com (Sunday Book Review)
dining@nytimes.com
home@nytimes.com
magazine@nytimes.com
oped@nytimes.com (for Op-Ed submissions, not  letters)
public@nytimes.com (Public Editor)
realestate@nytimes.com
scitimes@nytimes.com (Science)
sports@nytimes.com (SportsSunday)
sunbiz@nytimes.com
sundaystyles@nytimes.com (for articles in Thursday Styles and Sunday Styles)
travelmail@nytimes.com

For more information on how to contact The Times, please visit: http://www.nytimes.com/ref/membercenter/help/infoservdirectory.html.

Sincerely,

The New York Times

So now I know.

And in case you didn’t know and ever consider writing and submitting your own Letter to the Editor of The New York Times, it seems best to wait and see if they choose to publish it first, before posting it on your own blog or elsewhere.

Many thanks to everyone who gave me such positive feedback and validation regarding my letter/blog entry about Abortion and Perinatal Hospice. Even though it didn’t get printed in The New York Times newspaper or posted on their website, I do feel that my words helped to raise awareness about this movement, as well as to encourage conversation about all of the options available when faced with life-limiting prenatal diagnoses.

Cross-posted on Bereaved and Blessed.

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