Way back when, a person could not "reserve" a cache site by making an unsubmitted page. Basically if someone else came along and submitted a page there, the first to submit would get the spot. Then this changed a bit to where I would often write to the owner of the unsubmitted page and give them a period of time in which to claim the spot.
That process became problematic as more an more people started leaving unsubmitted pages pending, and it became rather unfair to the people actually placing something at the spot since they would have no way to know that another cacher was attempting to "reserve" that spot. However, I do want people to be able to find a cool spot and then have a short period of time to work on their cache page for it before submitting. So, based on some recent discussions, I am going back toward what it used to be which a few modifications, which is this:
Generally, first to submit will get the spot. Plain and simple. So if you really like that spot, you generally should use it or face the potential that you might lose it.
However, if you have a reason to want/need to hold a spot for a bit while you work on the page, state your reasons in a reviewer note on the unsubmitted page. If I see such a note, and it is less than 2 weeks old, if another cache pops up in that area, I will write to you and give you a short period of time (probably a week) to use the spot. If the spot requires a permit and it will take several weeks for that process to carry out, I will give you longer than a week. I generally will not archive your page since some folks are using pages as long term works in progress. So you might lose that spot, but will not lose the page.
One exception to archiving: If your page is over a year old and I haven't seen you active during that time, I might archive it as abandoned. But if anyone later wants such a page unarchived so they can work on it, write to me and I can unarchive it.
If you have special circumstances that might require longer than 2 weeks, add a reviewer note stating that you want to hold the spot for X weeks and explain why. Please don't abuse this. I want to see a valid reason why you need more than 2 weeks to get the cache in place and the page submitted. "I found a cool spot and am kind of busy right now" isn't good enough, but "I placed the cache there already and need to do some difficult calculations for my hard puzzle for it that might take 3 weeks to accomplish" may be OK. Another example of a reasonable request: "I have this put in place for a wheigo cache, but writing the cartridge will probably take a month." It is probably best to contact me ahead of time with these if you have any doubts on them.
Note that with event caches none of this is likely to be a problem since those tend to get submitted and then held for the event. To the extent they get held longer than 2 weeks, they get an exception by virtue of being an event cache.
If anyone has questions about this feel free to contact me.
Note: This applies to the Dakotas, I cannot speak for Nebraska on this.