I am not a publisher, editor, or studio chief. I don't buy books or screenplays. And yet I am constantly being pitched manuscripts and screenplays by aspiring writers. Here's the introduction from a particularly inept unsolicited pitch that I got today:
My name is Theodore Chambers, and I am an aspiring author. No, I take that back. I AM an author.
Just not published yet! I have just completed my first novel, and am sending feelers out to highly selected
group of publishing industry luminarios to invite them (you!) to take your seasoned red pen to my
new manuscript and mark away, giving me all your honest thoughts on pacing, character, setting,
theme, and plot devices. I know in my heart of hearts that I am destined to be a famous author,
and I think you will see the potential here for joining me on this journey. Just imagine if Nora Roberts
had come to you, Mr. Goldbrg, and said please look at my first manuscript. If you had accepted
that challenge, you would be spoken of today in even greater tones than you already are. Here is your chance
to make up for missing out on that!
Let me see if I have this straight — since I didn't have the opportunity to read Nora Roberts' first manuscript and be spoken of in "even greater tones" than I already am, I should now devote days of my time to reading, editing, and critiquing a manuscript from a total stranger who can't even spell my name? Gee, how could I resist an opportunity like that!? But wait, there's more:
Please let me know ASAP if you would like to see the manuscript, or perhaps if you are already intrigued enough
we can possibly discuss potential agents or editors. I am more than willing to cut you in on a finder's fee if anything
comes from you.
How generous. Needless to say, I won't be asking to read his "soon-to-be published novel titled THE ARGOSY AGONY." Clearly, this "destined to be famous author" has simply spammed every established novelist with a blog or website (his "highly selected group of publishing industry luminarios") with his solicitation, which includes a lengthy (and awful) plot summary that's riddled with typos and miss-spellings. The sad thing is that he doesn't realize what a bad impression he's creating among the "luminarios" that he believes that he's destined to join…and how self-destructive his solicitation actiually is.