For over ten years I have subscribed to a certain self-sufficiency magazine. This magazine helped me through my first, sometimes awkward, homesteading adventures. The publication had a distinctly Libertarian slant and was also there for me when Republicanism lost its sheen and I became a Libertarian activist. A couple of years ago the founder retired and passed control of the periodical over to his daughter. I was a little apprehensive of the magazine’s future knowing that the daughter was a supporter of a tax-funded standing army, and possibly even this country’s neo-imperialism, but I continued to subscribe. Unfortunately the articles lost their edginess, where before there were well written pieces about this country’s slide into totalitarianism, now there were pieces about how to wire lights.
Over the last few years I have written and submitted several pieces to this company via email, and never heard back. This didn’t bother me; it’s all part of being a writer. About six months ago, after I decided to get serious about this writing stuff, I wrote two market specific pieces. Market specific meaning I chose two periodicals and wrote what I thought they’d like to receive as submissions. I also took my submission process up several notches; I wrote cover letters for both pieces, submitted via snail-mail and included SASEs. The purpose of the SASE is to have the work returned, generally with a form rejection letter. About a month after sending these off, I received the first of the SASE back (from a mineralogy publication,) and was pleased to find a contract and request for photographs and captions. I still haven’t received even a form rejection letter back from the self-sufficiency magazine, but what I have received is a request to renew my subscription for what would be the twelfth year now. I’ll consider sending that in the day they have the common decency to use the means I provided to at least return my work.