If you ask me to name ten things I love, my mail box will be on the list. In fact, I can almost guarantee that if you show this picture to my daughter and ask her who it reminds her of, she'll point to her mother. ;-) I've always had an enormous affection for my mail box.
Mailing manuscripts and receiving checks or rejection slips was a joy to me, and I miss those days. Email just doesn't seem the same. I press the send button, and there it goes into a deep, dark hole. Who knows if the article, poem, proposal reaches its destination? What's worse, I believe email simplifies rejections. Hit reply, type "no thanks, doesn't fit our needs," and Ms. Editor is finished with me. Ever accidentally delete something? Oh, yeah, that'll work to someones advantage. Wonder whose?
Shhhhhh, let's just pretend we never received this crummy query.
This rant isn't an attack on editors or agents or even email. It's an attack on progress. I don't like it. I want to slow down this world. I want anonymity -- not just for myself, but for every agent, editor and author out there. I don't like knowing my favorite author has a snarly side, but I often see it on writing loops. I don't like learning that some agents are slackers or that they put their own writing before their business of being an agent, or that they're on another cruise or that they attend writers' conferences for the sole purpose of meeting with their clients, or that they're just downright mean. I don't like hearing that a favorite author has a radical, political side, or that she curses like a sailor.
The Internet makes sure I know all these things.
My daughter is right. I should have been a postal worker.