But I recently received such a ... ummm... well... unique? Yeah, that's it. I recently received a rather unique query letter for a story to be published in my ezine, Crime and Suspense. In the interest of aiding all you writers with high hopes of being published, I'm going to put it here, in all its unvarnished glory, with the exception of changing the names/emails to protect the privacy of the poor wight.
Here we go:
Mr. X. Xxxxxxxx word count
Post Office Box XXX
Davenport, XX #####
Please consider my submission for your publication.
Mr. X. Xxxxxxxx'
ABOVE IS WHAT I'VE BEEN SENDING TO PUBLISHERS. I DON'T LIKE QUERIES, BIOS, NOR COVER LETTERS . I AM NOT INTERESTED IN CULTIVATING RELATIONSHIPS WITH EDITORS, PUBLISHERS , NOR THE PUBLIC. I DON'T WRITE WHAT'S SELLING NOWADAYS; I WRITE SATIRICAL STORIES WITH SUBTLE ALEGORICAL IMPLICATIONS. I'M EITHER A TRUE GENIOUS OR A DAMNED FOOL. I LIKE THREE PEOPLE ON THE PLANET AND YOU MAKE FOUR IF YOU WANT TO DO SOME BUSINESS.
Now, let me address this on a couple of levels. First of all, there was no submission attached, although it does say that the writer would like me to consider his submission, and there is a space for "word count" although there are no numbers.
Secondly, although arrogance might work for some people, when they have a reason to be arrogant, this didn't. A person who types IN ALL CAPS, and can spell neither "genius" nor "allegorical" properly, has no reasons for arrogance, at least as a writer.
Thirdly, this individual either didn't bother to read the submission guidelines, or thought they didn't apply to him. That is NEVER a way to get on the good side of an editor.
Fourthly, when I rejected his initial query email and pointed out that (1) he hadn't included a submission and (2) he didn't follow the guidelines, he became abusive and wrote back to me with homophobic insults. Now, I'm not gay, and I'm not saying that it's insulting to BE gay, but when someone comes back with expressions like "you are so stupid, gayboy," it's obvious that the writer is attempting, however lamely, to be insulting.
That author is now filtered immediately into my email trash. It's obvious that I have not increased his count of "People I Like" to four.
Lesson to be learned from all this: If you are a writer seeking to be published in some market or venue, read the guidelines and follow them in your submissions. And DON'T TYPE IN ALL CAPS WITH MISSSSPELINGS AND BAD GRAMMAR, or become abusive when the editor rejects your work. The writing/publishing world is a relatively small one, and getting a reputation as a jerk or someone who is hard to work with is a quick way to reduce your chances of being published anywhere.