Monday, February 24, 2014

Communication Breakdown

With the advancement of technology, I feel there still needs to be an advancement of etiquette in communication. As example, writers, particularly those of the freelance variety, have an inherent immediate anxiety for an expectant response from a publisher/editor; for publishers/editors, there is no such immediacy apparent within the industry. Even today, with email, text messaging and social media, writers can wait to hear back anywhere from mere weeks to several months. Perhaps even longer if postal mail is still the preferred submission/response process, which nowadays I tend to avoid altogether.

This is ridiculous.

As such, I have decided, as I feel others should embrace as well, to give one week for a reply from a query sent to a potential interested party. Maybe two, but no more. That way, no one's time, especially mine, is wasted away in anxiety over a response. Would you wait even a day to hear back from anyone else in this 24/7 world? No, you typically would not. We, as a technologically connected society, expect immediate responses within a reasonable timeframe, and, frankly, should not continue being patient with or give credence to those who fail to grasp the idea. Entire revolutions – from the Arab Spring to the Ukraine uprisings – have benefited greatly from modern technology and connectivity. To say it another way:  nations have been transformed and governments overthrown faster than writers waiting for a simple yes/no from a publisher/editor in response to a query letter or submission!

Furthermore, as a general rule, I tend to avoid querying those who insist upon spelling out their email, i.e. “name{at}email{dot}com.” If people cannot figure out the proper format of an email address, it is highly probable they have no clue how to compose and/or send one in the first place.

We may not have flying cars or interstellar travel, but it is 2014…get with the program already!

©2014 Steve Sagarra

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