Indignant but anonymous authors
I know, better than most, how dispiriting it is to not have your work accepted for publication. I feel for the many, many authors and illustrators who send their work to us and hear nothing back. In the past Omnibus religiously responded to every single submission - we kept all rejection letters, we entered names addresses and manuscripts into a database. It was a huge amount of work. Then our office staff was reduced and we had no choice but to stop doing those things because if we tried to we were all going to lose our minds. We put up new guidelines. We encouraged anyone who rang us to read them. We explained that if an author had heard nothing in three months they could safely assume their work had not been accepted. We updated the guidelines regularly to inform people about which month's submissions had been finished - we worked harder at clearing the unsolicited pile so that people didn't have to wait as long to find out the status of their work.
Apparently this is not enough for some. We have had a handful of bitter letters from people telling us how horrible we are for not responding - always anonymous of course in case they ever send anything again. Telling us how little it would take to send a rejection or (what most appear to want) information as to why their submission was rejected. Some of these made me very sad - some made me laugh. All of them made me realise that these people really haven't a clue about the work involved in reading the slush pile and are not cognisant of the fact that Omnibus is one of a very few remaining publishers that offer the opportunity. This week I had one - anonymous of course, that someone had gone to some trouble with. I apologise for the lack of copyright permission for the cartoon.