Angela–Many of us would love to know more about the ethics and practicality of simultaneous submissions, especially as they fly off to literary magazines and journals, many of which report they “reply,” if you can call it that–in four-to-six months. Some are longer. Even many “B” markets that might actually pay enough to help a writer make a living indicate very long response times, even to queries.
I tell all writers to simultaneously submit. And, if the publication requires it, tell them it’s a Simultaneous Submission. Otherwise, my opinion is, if they’re not going to contact the writer for months on end, why should the writer wait months for a response before being able to send it to the publication’s competitors?
The publishing industry gives writers enough grief. Asking them to sit on an idea for weeks or months is something they’re not, in my opinion, entitled to do. Send out simultaneous submissions and sell to the first pub that makes you an offer. Maybe if we all start doing that, publishers will know that they have limited time to respond and will start giving us answers accordingly.