Precious Cargo

Refreshingly Bitter And Twisted Observations On Life's Passing Parade.

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Location: Valley Village, California, United States

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

The Strange Ways of Editors

About one month ago, I asked Warren Beath, author of the new book James Dean In Death, if he would be interested in doing an interview with me for Salon.com if I succesfully pitched one to them. He said yes. Yesterday I whipped up a nice pitch letter and emailed it to Salon and two other publications. One of those others was a free weekly published in Las Vegas which I only became aware of because Tod Goldberg published a review of the controversial novel Rainbow Party there.

Today I received this rejection fron the editor:

SSebelius@reviewjournal.com wrote:

> Peter:
>
> Thanks for your e-mail, but I think the subject
> matter falls outside
> CityLife's area of interest.
>

So I responded as follows:

Dear Steve:

I'm curious as to why a review of a book about James
Dean (on the 50th anniversary of his death) is outside
your area of interest (or of your readers) while a
review of a young adult novel about "rainbow parties"
is? Because the latter promises to be titillating or
salacious?

Yours,
Peter Winkler

You always hear editors complain about how overburdened they are. Well not this one. It happens that I was having some problems with my email today, so about an hour after leaving my response, I went to my inbox, only to find this reply:

"Peter:

Clearly, you've read CityLife only to gather information to buttress your pitch. A regular reader would know the answer, and, to be frank, your question answers itself.

Please take no for an answer, as it's the only one you will get."

Instead of simply answering my question, this thing sends that as a reply. Actually, I went to this creep's rag's web site to read Goldberg's review, which his brother Lee had excerpted on his blog. Otherwise, I would never have known of the paper's existence. Why would I? I don't live in Las Vegas. Reading periodicals in order to gather enough information to query their editors is SOP for freelance writers.

1 Comments:

Blogger Nancy said...

Yikes -- what a mess!

7:23 PM  

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