Stamps---the topic that has more lives than a herd of cats

Forever stamps are first class postage forever. Thus the name. Put them on your RETURN envelopes--the SASEs. Don't waste them on your outgoing mail. You're mailing it today, postage rates aren't changing between now and Friday. I swear.

No one cares how many stamps you have on an envelope.

From an aesthetic standpoint I like one stamp, but yanno..it's not something I give a rat's ass about. I do notice cute stamps and new stamps but only in a very very cursory way and cause I look at a LOT of stamps in the course of a week. I don't remember you sent something with a particular stamp. I just notice cause I'm sitting here opening mail.

Every time you start obsessing about stamps I want you to stop, think, and return to your desk. For every wayward stamp obsession you owe me twenty minutes of writing.

Write well.
That's all.


Anonymous said...

Has anyone tangled with Homeland Security's postal restrictions? I recently mailed four copies of a 25 page submission to a writing contest. I was to include a SASE envelope so that the manuscript pages could be returned with comments on them.

The post office sold me a stamp the SASE, but said that whomever mailed it back to me would have to mail it from the post office. The reason? The contest submission weighed over a pound (barely). No matter how I begged and pleaded, the postal worker wouldn't budge. I'm worried that the contest officials won't follow the post office's instructions or will be ticked at me for causing them a trip to the post office window.

Miss Snark said...

what the hell kind of paper are you using that 25 sheets weighs more than 16 ounces??

The "one pound or more" at the post office rule has been in effect since 2001.

Anonymous said...

Four copies of 25 pages = 100pp, Miss. Is that better?

On stamp obsession: Worst boss I ever had (and I've had some doozies) once yelled at me for 20 minutes, with little flecks of foam coming out of the sides of his mouth, without completing a sentence so I could figure out what had upset him so, then stalked off. So I asked the office manager (addressed by the evil boss as: "You f-ing imbecile") what it was about, and was informed that on the mass mailing I'd done the day before I'd put all the stamps on sideways. He decided that this somehow made him look stupid and the mass mailing would be counterproductive. After all, who wants to go to a restaurant that puts its stamps on sideways?

Just in case there's anybody out there who thinks that yelling and cursing at employees cows them and makes them fear you, I spent the whole tirade thinking: "You're impotent, aren't you, you sumbich?"

No, stamps aren't particularly important; and you needn't respect anyone who respects himself so little as to worry what people think of his stamps.

Don said...

I think it's before that, even. Blame the unabomber for that, although I suppose things have tightened even since then (it used to be metered mail could still go in the mailbox).

wannabe_nitwit said...

1 thought of stamps = 20 min. of writing?

Damn, and I wanted sleep tonight!

Terry Odell said...

As a contest coordinator, I spent half an hour at the post office yesterday mailing packets of 5 25 page submissions to the various judges. We know about the 1 pound rule. As a matter of fact, our contest specifically says "entry fee includes return postage" and we send everything in flat rate envelopes. The first year I ran the contest, we didn't and it was a royal pain, because people 'guestimated' the postage required on their return SASE's and I ended up having to make up the difference when they miscalculated. Seems the PO won't apply excess postage on one envelope to insufficient on another! We told everyone to include a Priority mailing LABEL.
Amazing at how many couldn't figure that one out and still sent regular envelopes with stamps.

We'll do it again when we mail the packets back to the entrants.

My only concern is when I mail the finalists' entries to our editor judges, because some send the packets via their in-house mail system. I now include a Priority stamp, paper-clipped to their cover letter and request that if they're going to mail it back at their house's expense, to please return the stamp and save our poor chapter $4.05.

It's not worth begging the postal clerks. They're bound by the rules, and there's also a long chain of people who handle the mail and kick it back. I'm still trying to get the definitive answer on whether a meter strip will bypass the standing in line because they can trace it. Some clerks say yes, some say no, and even if they say it's ok to drop it in the mail slot, if a sorting clerk doesn't see the official PO stamp of approval, they might kick it back anyway.

Anonymous said...

I think the correct term is a clusterfuck of cats.

Anonymous said...

Terry, can't you ask the postmaster to decide if the clerks are all fouled up?

One clerk has one answer, the other comes up with something else. Sounds like the USPS at its best, as in: WTS? (see Snarkasaurus).


Anonymous said...

Miss Snark:

I love your advice, but you always tell writers to write well, write well, write well. You never do say what writers should do (and all you writers out there who fall in thie category know who you are, don't you, you little rascals, heh, heh) WHO WRITE LIKE SHIT.

You tell us you don't like glitter.

You tell us you don't like cookie crumbs.

You tell us you don't like stars. (Or was that some other blogger?)

You tell us you don't like reviews of the "My mother thought my book was darling" variety. (My mother is deveased, by the way.)

You tell us you don't like baking soda or powdered sugar in an envelope with "Dr. Hatfield" on the return address. (Or was that another blogger again?)

You tell us all this stuff you don't like.

But you never tell us what you DO like.

Tell us what you DO like, Miss Snark.

Come on, give a scribe a break.

Oh, by the way, did the lady who submitted that 800,000 word first novel without an SASE ever get under contract with Simon & Schuster? I have one just like it if she did.

All the best.

Anonymous said...

"The post office sold me a stamp the SASE, but said that whomever mailed it back to me would have to mail it from the post office."

You should have asked, "Why would him have to mail it back to me from the post office?"