Tossing Submissions unread

Miss Snark is a heartless beast. She's nasty, cruel and mean. She's been known to shove elderly ladies aside at Westminster so Killer Yapp can gaze with awe upon the bitch of his dreams.

Yet, even Miss Snark, terror of the slush pile that she is, cannot bring herself to discard mail unopened.

She's undergone aversion therapy, hydrotherapy and thermonuclear therapy to overcome this failing, all to no avail.

Other perhaps are not so flawed but Miss Snark reads every dang letter that she gets. Kind of like Santa Claus. Santa Snark. Oh ya. I see a Macy's balloon in my future.


Sponge Girl said...

Sorry to burst your bubble, Miss Snark, but Santa's helpers read and answer his mail.

Surely you didn't think he could handle all those shopping centre appearances *and* write the thousands of letters himself?

Here's the heartbreaker: Santa uses form letters, too.

So I would recommend that you look into outsourcing some of your activities. Hire a few oiled cabana boys to do the board meetings for you, or to read through the slushpile. Or to check the contracts for unadulterated thievery.

After all, why should a rosy-cheeked Coca-Cola ad have it easier than you?

Kitty said...

LA LA LA, I can't hear you, Sponge Girl!

Savannah Jordan said...

If only there were more people like you in this business. It is not a problem, it is not a disservice of self, nothing that needs therapy. You Go, Ms. Snark!!

Simon Haynes said...

There's the reason why email enquiries are a dumb idea. Anyone can fire off an email as easily as posting comments to a blog, and with about as much forethought. In fact, it's easier because you don't even have to prove you're human by entering SNRSSX no SRSNSW no SND-- dammit!
A letter, on the other hand, is a sign that someone took time over something. You feel obliged to open it ... and totally disappointed when it turns out to be a computer-generated bill.

Dave Kuzminski said...

Who said you actually have to throw away unwanted subs? I only advocated posting that you do. Only you would know whether it's a bluff to reduce the slush pile or true. ;)

Darby said...

I can appreciate this more now that I read submissions for an online literary magazine. Some people disregard guidelines so horridly, it kills me to spend time reading them when I could be reading things from authors who patiently follow the rules.

Carter said...

Many magazines use their guidelines as the first criterion for weeding the slush. If the sub doesn't meet the guidelines for formatting, etc., it goes to File 13. Makes sense to me. Anybody that can't read and follow simple instructions needs a little more schooling.

Tami P said...

Gosh, we writers are a tough bunch, aren't we? Miss Snark has already said she would forgive errant writers (read that at scatterbrained creative types)for committing any number of query sins. Why is it such a surprise that she can not resist the temptation of that next great masterpiece teetering precariously atop her slush pile?

Makes perfect sense to me.

By George, I think I'm falling in love.

Actually, it's refreshing to know that agents (and possibly editors, although it's not proven here yet) can still have such an unjaded love for their work.

By the way, Dave, bless you for the P&E site!

K said...

I judge a fiction contest for the magazine where I work, and we get a huge volume of truly frightful writing. Yet still it's all carefully filed away in my office. I can't bear to throw away even the most horrid of stories! I guess, as a writer, it pains me to think of those poor folks out there putting their hearts and souls into something that will be chunked into the recycling bin.