poison pen

Posted on October 29, 2010
Filed Under literature | Leave a Comment


The internet brings much pleasure to the members of the likeithateit team, but never as much as when it is highlighting the foibles of others. Much like this website, slush pile hell. For those who aren’t aware of what a “slush pile” is let me draw lines between the dots.  A slushpile is the slang term that publishers give to unsolicited manuscripts. They didn’t ask for them, they know they’re almost certainly going to be trash, but what if they weren’t? No one wants to pass on the next Harry Potter. So some poor sod is assigned the task of reading through them, or at least as much as they can bear, before they toss it to the side in disgust and pick up the next one. On top of these manuscripts are introductions known as query letters, within which the author talks a little (or a lot) about the project, its genre and who they are.  The reader at Slushpile Hell has taken the best/worst bits of these letters and presented them as a delightful testament to the vanities, paranoia and just plain stupidity that is the unpublished writer (of which I am a proud member.) I present to you some tidbits for your delectation, but assure you that there is gold a plenty in this treasure trove of literary blunders.

Example one: I received your rejection notice, and I want to let you know that even if you would have offered representation, I would have turned it down. You obviously have no taste in literature and are a hack. I look forward to your failure as the publishing industry goes down in flames.

example two: The significance of this book is that Angels dictated it to me.  I am able to “hear” and write the words that are relayed to me by listening internally.  This book is based on channeled Angelic insight and has significant relevance to the people of the world.

example three: Every agent I’ve encountered thus far has been a complete idiot. Let’s see if you can prove you’re different by representing me and my book.

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