This is the second post in our Must-Have Law Review Email Templates 2-part series. Click here to view the first post.
Communicating with authors while you’re mid-review of submissions is one thing. Letting authors know whether or not your board has decided to publish their article is another, sometimes uncomfortable, thing.
Templates for both publication offers and article rejections are important tools that all law reviews should keep on hand. A publication offer template is arguably the most enjoyable to compose and send — and your board probably already has one. But having a template for letting authors know your board is not extending an offer is equally important, though often overlooked. Don’t let nerves, lack of time, or “but we’ve never sent rejections before” stop you from letting authors know the fate of their article.
We’ve drafted some starter templates to help your board let authors know whether or not you have decided to extend a publication offer. Remember: you can save up to 10 different decision templates on Scholastica for easy use and reuse, and you can let multiple authors at once know that you’re not extending publication offers on their articles.
These templates are also online in a Google doc, formatted so that they can be copied and pasted right into Scholastica. If you do use these examples to create your own templates, we’d recommend updating them so they reflect the personality and values of your board. As long as you send a polite and clear decision letter, your submitting authors will appreciate it!
When you’ve determined that you’re not going to extend an offer on an article, it’s easy and courteous to let authors know. You can send rejections one-by-one, or wait and reject a bunch of articles all at once every couple of days. Drafting a rejection email doesn’t have to be hard! Use the example below for inspiration as you draft your own rejection template.
Here’s an example decision not to publish email:
Finding an article you want to publish is exciting! Based on our experience working with law review editors, acceptance letters that are clear, direct, and convey exactly what publishing with your law review entails are great ways to secure an article.
Here’s an example decision to publish email:
The most common thing we hear from editors who don’t want to send rejections to authors is “our law review has never sent rejections, so how could we start now?” That’s a tough and awkward position to be in, but it’s not something that is difficult to change. By drafting a polite decision email and sending it to all the old articles in your manuscript table, you’re able to clear out your queue and leave your next board with a fresh slate!
Here’s an example email for rejecting articles that old boards didn’t reject:
We hope you find these sample decision letter templates useful! For those reading this who are Scholastica users, or if you’re interested in learning more about how to communicate decisions to authors via Scholastica, be sure to check out our help doc: Editor Guide > Make decisions. We’ve also put these email templates into a Google Doc so they’re easy for you to access and personalize for your own use!