You Are a Stupid, Ignorant Writer—and Your Story Just Paid the Price

You're out there. I know you are. The writer who submitted a story to me by UPS Next Day Air. You thought your story was so important you paid extra to rush it to me. You no doubt thought I'd be honored to recieve your words wrapped in a special brown and green Reusable Express Envelope. 

Or, as it says in small print on the barely legible envelope, "Use. Reuse. Then Recycle."

I say barely legible because the envelope sat under the snow for a week and appears to have been stepped on a few times. I also suspect a squirel or rabbit gnawed on the envelope, but it's hard to tell which species did the deed. I assume UPS delivered the envelope while I was in Alabama for Christmas. They probably left it on my porch like they usually do and at some point the wind blew it into the snow, where I discovered the envelope this morning.

Naturally I stopped my mail delivery for the week I was gone. If you hadn't been showboating by sending your submission Next Day Air it would have been held by the post office until I returned. And your story would not now be the consistency of mush. The only thing your story remains fit for is recycling. So at least in that regard, kudos on using an eco-friendly envelope.

But that's only part of why you are a stupid, ignorant writer.

I mean, your ruined submission doesn't even contain a SASE. Don't know what that is? Well, I'd tell you to look it up but that's obviously beyond your feeble abilities. Because if you'd looked up storySouth's guidelines you'd know the magazine only accepts electronic submissions. We've never accepted mailed submissions. And if you'd checked, you'd also have learned—and please pay special attention, because this is important—I HAVEN'T EDITED STORYSOUTH IN ALMOST TWO YEARS!

Check the magazine's Wikipedia page. Check storySouth's about us page, which lists Terry Kennedy and the other great editors who now produce this wonderful literary journal. Pan all the way to the bottom of that page and you'll see my name under Editors Emeriti. To save you the terrible pain of Googling that term, it means I no longer accept submissions mailed in Next Day Air envelopes which sit in the snow all week and are chewed on by cute-looking rodents.

If you want to be a writer, you must first be a reader. And if you can't even read a magazine's guidelines you have no business submitting to them in the first place.

So yes, you are a stupid, ignorant writer. And unfortunately, your story paid the price for your sins.