Tips for those writing law review articles
Gene Volokh has started an interesting thread, where he asks for comments from law review editors on their process for screening articles. Comments so far are mostly from primary journals at the top 25 or so schools. They give some very interesting insights (which are totally outside my experience, which came at editing a law review 30 yrs ago, when there were many fewer submissions). Essentially:
Some of these places are getting 80 articles a day, others about 80 a week; initial screening is more like a quick skim.
The cover letter is thus VERY important, followed by the beginning of the article.
Turnaround is much quicker than in my day, usually a few weeks. If you submit to several reviews, and get an acceptance from one, you can go to others that you rank more highly, asked for expedited review, and get it in a few days.
The majority (and these are top reviews, mind you) get immediately chucked because they're terribly written, merely recite authority without adding analysis, are by law students, or are re-hashes of past articles by the same author with few, if any, changes.
Not that it'd matter to me, but it helps to have a big name. The smart reviews spot ones by well-known authors and review them immediately, in hopes of pumping out an acceptance before the other reviews can examine it and accept.