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I'm out there again trying to flog my stories to agents and publishers, reading through websites, hints and tips for submissions trying to get an edge. I can't think of another industry where it's such an inaccurate science. Everybody's looking for the next big thing but nobody knows what the next big thing is. They're not even sure what the next little thing is!
The submission process - they also like their little foibles - send in the first 321.5 words but only in sacre bleur 14pt script. If you use any other we won't open it. Please don't address me as Miss, Mrs, Mr or Sir and if you put Ms I'll send the boys round.
Please include a synopsis of precisely 100 words, an elevator pitch of 12 words and your bio should be less than 200 words but more than 80 and should include a summary of your literary achievements. (Working out and following the instructions is a huge literary achievement in itself.)
You do all that and your email pings back saying, "sorry this agent has now left our agency and set up her own somewhere else. Therefore the email you sent will never be read and we won't pass it on to her coz we hate her as she left us and took JK Rowling with her, and all the biscuits."