Updated: 8/16/15; 18:42:13

pedantic nuthatch
Life in a Northern Virginia suburb of Washington, D.C. B.M.A.T.C., and Etruscan typewriter erasers. Blogged by David Gorsline.

Tuesday, 10 February 2004

Teresa Nielsen Hayden explains the facts of life to whiny rejected authors:

The writer had submitted her novel for consideration. What did that publishing house and that editor owe her? Exactly two things: the return of her manuscript, assuming she'd sent a SASE with it, and an answer, yes or no. Everything else was a gift.

Reminds me of what Leta says about whiny actors who complain about audiences that don't laugh hard enough or otherwise demonstrably appreciate a play: The man in the stalls has paid his 15 bucks. He doesn't owe you anything beyond not being disruptive. It's not his job to make you feel good; it's your job to entertain him.

More hard truths from Hayden:

I frequently see denunciations from writers who say an editor can't possibly judge their novel from three chapters and an outline. Sure we can, even if the chapters are short and the first one's atypical. In many cases, three pages are enough. You don't have to drink the entire carton of milk in order to tell that it's gone bad. And in any event, three chapters are certainly long enough to tell you whether you want to look at the rest of the book.

(Thanks to Boing Boing.)

posted: 10:12:49 PM  

Why does Cory Doctorow avoid the dictionary? Pecksniffian is a perfectly good word, and it doesn't mean what you think. Methinks Doctorow should brush up on his Dickens.

posted: 9:57:01 PM  

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