I always feel sad for this generation when I’m told that they have a 15 second reading attention span.
As a writer for online sites I’ve learned to write short – short sentences, short paragraphs and short articles.
But at the same time I can’t help thinking about all those wonderful books this generation may be missing out on, books they haven’t got the patience to read. Books that can’t be broken down into 140 characters for Twitter.
But I have to admit that there’s one aspect of today’s technical age that has also made me impatient.
I can’t be bothered to write for publications that only accept submissions by snail-mail.
I understand that they don’t want to waste their time and money printing out my submission and/or they don’t want their inbox clogged up with articles and stories.
But I think that they are being unreasonable. In today’s hi-tech age, we should take full advantage of modern technology’s advances, and one of them is the speed of communication.
Just as writers are expected to have websites, or at least blogs, and to be able to give links in their emails to editors showing them samples of their work online, so should editors be prepared to accept email submissions.
Like other writers of my age I remember writing on manual typewriters and blessing the arrival of electric typewriters and then word processors. I had to keep up with new innovations so why shouldn’t editors .
Gone are the days when I would send my queries by post , wait a few months for a reply and then type and send off the article. All of which could easily take 6 months or even more.
Now I email a query, often get a reply within minutes and if necessary can get the article and photos into the editor’s inbox within 24 hours.
No I’m sorry, I just don’t have the patience any more to go back to snail-mail and a wait of weeks at least and possibly months.
So this new market I just discovered, which prompted this ‘tirade’ isn’t going on my to-write-for list. During the time it would take me to go through the whole process with them I could have queried, written and sold dozens of articles.
It’s a shame – I hope they change their submissions’ policy soon.
Do you agree?
There must be some people still submitting by snail mail or the pubs couldn’t exist.