I’ve worked ten years as a magazine editor. For your entertainment, here is a list of ways you can absolutely annoy the snot out of any editor.
Don’t include your name or address with your submissions.
Since editors rely on that information to track, pay, and make sure their writers receive a copy of the publication, an easy way to annoy them is to make them look up this information… if they even have it. Even better is if they have to use a different database to locate you, and must write all the information by hand on their hard copy!!
Don’t include a cover letter of any sort.
What editors hate most of all is being thought of as a robot on the other side of the screen, so send them a blank e-mail with an attachment! No friendly greeting, no niceties, just a blank e-mail. Even better is if you also don’t include your address on this submission. Double-whammy!
Ignore the writer’s guidelines.
Guidelines are for simpletons, not first-class writers like yourself. Ignore them. Publications are really just here to send you checks anyway.
Editors need knocked down a peg. If they refuse to print something, argue with them.
Address your query to the wrong person.
Send it to “The Editor,” but put the Publisher’s name on it. Continue to do so even if you know the editor, and she is the one who responds to all your queries.
Don’t listen to anything she says.
This is one of the best ways to annoy an editor. If she turns one of your stories down for a particular reason that is fixable, make sure you don’t fix it on the next manuscript you send her. This shows her who is boss of your writing – and it isn’t her!
Don’t proofread your work.
Every editor likes to feel important, and as if they are earning their paycheck, so make sure to leave at least a couple of typos and/or uses of the wrong word in your manuscript. If possible, misspell something in your query letter, like their last name.
Include the editor in your forwards/junk mail list.
Even though her inbox is usually overflowing, she always needs one more “end times” e-mail, cute puppies forward, or invitation from Link-Whatever, Facebook, and all your other social networking websites. Make sure everyone has her e-mail address!
There you have it. Now, go forth and annoy your editor!