Sunday, February 21, 2010

It's not your politics that offends me, sir

Dear, Literary Agent.

If you are a Latte drinking Liberal this isn’t for you. But if you feel Tea Party movement makes some sense, you will find this interesting.

My conservative non fictional book will offend secular progressives. My commentary is packed with the thoughts and observations of real Americans. Yes, I believe in the tea party. I have independent conservative thoughts. I shop at Wal-Mart. I love my country and hate how the secular progressive are ruining it. Wow. If you are a liberal this could be rocking your senses. Elitist living in New York or Los Angeles could not possibly comprehend the wisdom of the average American.

My non fiction commentary contains over 150 subjects of discussion. Some humorous, some serious, and some will remind you of subjects you forgot you were mad about. The subjects range from the ACLU, Christmas attacks, Guantanamo, Red necks, Taxes, to Yuppies. Here are a few examples from my book (redacted) Somebody had to say it.

Sincerely,



I am offended by the very idea you think I do not love this country with all my heart, and would gladly take up arms to defend her. You do not own the flag, sir. You do not own democracy.

This is a great and noble country filled with people who declare their love in ways you may not agree with nor understand. Do not for a single moment doubt their sincerity or their love.

We may argue about tax rates, and expenditures, but if we do not recognize we both love America, we diminish what this country is about: different people able to co-exist because we agree on how to govern ourselves.

And for your information: I'm nowhere near a secular progressive nor a liberal.

59 comments:

maybe genius said...

*sigh*

I'm as "real" as you are, my friend. And just because my views differ does not mean I think your stances are less valid or honest.

This country is not made or ruined by one group of people.

Standback said...

Youch. What you said. Besides which, building your query around the central theme of "you're probably going to hate this book because I'm so wise and people who disagree with me are so elitist" does not strike me as a winning strategy.

Kay said...

That tells whomever.

DebraLSchubert said...

Wow. Seriously, wow.

Christi Goddard said...

"The subjects range from the ACLU, Christmas attacks, Guantanamo, Red necks, Taxes, to Yuppies. Here are a few examples from my book (redacted) Somebody had to say it."

And I don't think it's you, buddy.

If he/she is using such labels for people and wants to be taken seriously, then they are setting themselves up for failure.

They sound more like someone with a lot of anger and bitterness, and the world already has plenty of that.

Either that, or they want to be the literary equivalent of a shock jock.

Anyone questioning my patriotism would get a swift kick to the face.

DK said...

You were a lot more polite than I would have been, Janet.

atsiko said...

Shoot, I'm a broke college student in Missouri. My father and grandfather fought to defend America. I don't like lattes and I've shopped at Wal-mart quite a bit.

I'd still reject this idiot. Maybe he should talk to Sarah Palin.

Stephanie, PQW said...

Hooly-looly, are you kidding me? This letter troubles me on several fronts. To begin with, this person is trying to sell a product and they just insulted the buyer. Not really the birghtest idea. Then, their assumptions that only those with similar philosophies love this country. This person has completely missed the reason it was founded and that same thing that keeps it great. Original and Varied Thought.

While there are many things that hamper this nation, it is the sum of our parts that keep it great. The tea party incident really does not support your premise. Please read our history and learn.

Mireyah Wolfe said...

There are a lot of things I don't agree with or like about this country, and some of its people, and its government. But the premise of this country and the true heart of it is not in those things, and regardless of them, I will always love this country and be proud to have been born here.

I am a liberal type person, but don't ever accuse me of not loving my country.

Thanks for sharing, Janet!
--Mireyah

lora96 said...

Wow.

Sir is just so PLEASED with himself and his intolerant views adn exculsive claim on patriotism. I, too, shop at Walmart. I live in podunk and even we smarmy liberals have to buy paper towels and soap.

I don't doubt that he loves this country as well as you or I. I merely doubt his ability to speak or write rationally through his illogical fervor.

stacy said...

Gah!!

Joni Rodgers said...

Suggested P.S.: "Please rest assured my rejection of horrendously stinko semi-literate writing transcends party lines."

csmithauthor said...

I especially love "Wow. If you are a liberal this could be rocking your senses."

Not really. It's the same darn-ole-vitriol I can find on any self-righteous blog. Left OR Right wing. Yes the words change, but the idea of spreading enlightenment through rage and superiority sure looks the same.

Well done, whoever you are. You've given me a lot more faith that merely by being sane, you can stand out of the pile.

Valerie said...

I think the best part of this it that on top of all the insults, he still managed to avoid telling you what his book is actually about.

Rick Daley said...

I'm an independent voter, and I think to call a book based on the philosophies of either political party "non-fiction" shows a severe detachment with reality.

myimaginaryblog said...

"I'm nowhere near a secular progressive nor a liberal." Really? I'm somewhere near some, and I would think in the publishing industry you couldn't throw a book without hitting a secular progressive or a liberal. ;)

It sure is discouraging how often those least able to express themselves try to compensate with sneering, scolding, and name-calling.

Patricia Stoltey said...

Amazing. Was that a real query letter? LOL

Trinity said...

Thanks Janet for rejecting a blatant spew of intolerance and hatred. Sadly people like that make conservatives look stupid, as if they aren't capable of formulating an intelligent argument. Saying, "If you're an elitist lefty you hate America" isn't an argument. It's an uneducated and hugely inaccurate assumption. This country is our home. Why wouldn't we ALL love it?

Laurel said...

I'm confused. Is that a query letter?

I feel like I have a pretty good grip on the guy's opinions but no idea what the book is supposed to be. Humorous political commentary a la P J O'Rourke? Or is it a Kazinski style manifesto? How long is it? Why does he think "Dear Literary Agent" who may or may not be a tree hugging, Prius driving, friend of Air America would have any interest in this book?

For that matter, why would gun-toting, NRA supporting, Fair Tax espousing "Dear Literary Agent" be interested in this book?

It seems the main pitch is something like "If you love your country then you will represent my book."

Perplexing query strategy.

Shakespeare said...

Funny, too, that to those across the ocean, we're all conservative.

This writer has created a self-fulfilling prophecy, offending while assuming he/she will offend.

I'm offended not by the thoughts, but by the lack of thought entirely.

Loretta Ross said...

You know who this is, don't you? It's the "high fullutent", "why do you love the devil?" sign guy!

Gotta be!

acereporter73 said...

Was that even a query or just a poorly crafted propaganda piece?

Even if the writer is serious (from their own POV), he or she is simply regurgitating opinions.

I just hope this person doesn't self-publish their stellar opinions... the less we see of this sort of rant the better.

Kate Halleron said...

People, people. He's not trying to get accepted, he's trying to get rejected, because only by being rejected by the latte-sipping liberals (what, conservatives don't drink lattes? I know plenty who do) can he prove to himself that he's superior.

If you really want to send him into a loop, you'd ask for a partial. Heh.

And since when is shopping at Walmart proof you love your country? That one I don't get at ALL. Buying cheap Chinese crap is more 'American' than shopping at Sears?

Lola Sharp said...

Uh-oh, I like carmel machiato's and frappes.
The horror.

Janet, people like this would drive me to drink... the Kool-Aid. How do you do it? You are my hero.

annerallen said...

Ignorance + rage = danger. These people are scary. And "somebody had to say it"? I thought Faux News said it 24/7.

Isn't it strange that anybody considers shopping at a chain of small-business-eating big box stores selling cheap Chinese goods makes him a patriot? A Chinese patriot, maybe?

wondering04 said...

On an entirely different subject - anyone who has a Girl Scout Merit Badge on their blog is OK with me, I brought my daughter up through GS from Daisies to Senior. She soon goes off to college with a bronze and silver award under her belt - we kind of fizzled out with Gold.
Heather

Heidi Willis said...

I like tea AND lattes...

does that make me an independent?

I'm very confused...

Josin L. McQuein said...

Why do things like this always claim to speak for "real" Americans? The way they spin it, you'd think the commentary of imaginary Americans was rampant.

And FWIW -

It's a plain lousy query. Too vague to be effective and too combative to be appealing.

Blech.

I say sick the shark on him, but no one wants her to get a tummy ache.

Jane Steen said...

From a completely cross-fertilizing Winter Olympics angle, I think this was written by Evgeny Plushenko. Thank you for that gem.

Kosmos said...

Are they shopping a book or a manifesto ?

Jeanne said...

Amen, Janet! I shop at W*l-M*rt as well as boutiques. I have no idea what a "secular progressive" is, but I know I'm not elitist. I drive an inherited Buick, live in the suburbs, and from what I can tell, I'm fairly average and definitely American. In no way does this alleged author represent MY views of the world.

Is it just me, or did anyone else notice the comma after "Dear"? Kudos to Kate Halleron for pointing out W*l-M*art's "Made in China" philosophy--so NOT "buy American", is it?

Lisa Blandford said...

I'm utterly confused. How did this go from how to better write query letters to who does or does not love their country?

Thank you Janet, for your FREE advise and expertise. It is why you are the agent and I am the writer.

Jennifer said...

I'm an independent who doesn't consider herself liberal (I'm sure this guy would disagree), and this sort of thing offends me to no end.

I'm so tired of the absolute vilification of the other side. The stereotypes (this comes from both directions) and think it's the most undemocratic thing in America. I just wish we could get beyond all of this idiotic "them evil liberals!" talk and maybe people could start having an intelligent conversation about actual issues and solve some of the problems we have.

I agree, you're much nicer than I would have been. Okay, I'd have probably been nice as well (I don't do mean well), but I'd have been turning around and having a little rant to someone after.

Anne-Marie said...

I agree with Kate. Ask him for a partial, just to really mess with his head.

Nancy Coffelt said...

Wow,my dad didn't write that letter did he?

Sigh. Big, gigantic sigh.

Peter Dudley said...

She (I'm assuming it's a woman because any man with these convictions would surely send a woman to do that shopping at Wal-Mart) could have much simplified this query by writing it thus:

Dear Agent,

I have a blog, and I think I'm clever. I just figured out that my blog could be printed on paper, and that would give Real Americans something to read by the light of the fires from burning all those liberal books that are being published today.

Sincerely,
....

Malia Sutton said...

I hate tea and I've never been to Wal-Mart.

But I love my country just as much as this schmuck.

lexcade said...

i'm so sad that this is a legit query. what is wrong with people?

it'd be like if a "liberal" wrote "if you're a small-gov't loving, tea-drinking, wal-mart shopping redneck (best i could come up with, sadly), then you won't like this." shamey shame shame.

query based on your book's merits. if your book has no merits, then do what this person did.

Chris Johnson said...

I'm better than a real American -- I'm a surreal American.

Michelle Schusterman said...

Hear hear, Janet. Excellent response, and more than he/she deserved.

Peg McGuire said...

Wow. Someone took a bitter pill today. And then bit you.

Rude people suck.

Karen said...

Things like this make my inner-Conservative cringe.

I don't know how we got to this level of personal and irresponsible attacks. I think most people really want the same things for our country, we just have different ideas about how to get there. Why do we have to put each other down? It would be so much more productive to work together.

DeadlyAccurate said...

My guess: "secular progressive" = atheist.

The Rejectionist said...

We got this one too! As a Communist/mouth-foaming leftist, we were offended by his shockingly mediocre prose stylings.

Betsy Ashton said...

This is why the First Amendment is so powerful. Even the stupid, the opinionated, the village idiots have the right to share their views of the world. And I have the right to hit the delete key or the off switch so that I don't have to read or listen.

Katherine said...

Wow, this offends me so deeply I don't even know what to say. Probably the biggest reason it offends me is because I am a somewhat conservative voter, and there is NO WAY I want anyone thinking someone like this thinks like/speaks for me.

Kudos to you for your lovely, succinct response.

Ellen said...

"If you are a liberal this could be rocking your senses."
More like making me think: *sigh* Heard it.

lknick said...

Joe Scarborough (of MSNBC's "Joe in the morning") interviewed neighbors in his Upper West Side neighborhood before the last election. "No," said one respondent, "I don't have any conservative friends. If they were conservative, they would no longer be my friends."
Think about it. Why should anyone believe liberals love diversity country as much as we, when they talk that way?

jmartinlibrary said...

This reminds me of the recent editor/agent slush pile piece in The Stranger. I laughed so hard I almost...well, you know.

If you haven't read it, please do. It's all about finding author jewels like your commenter.

Oh. Mylanta. Brilliant Humor in that article.

www.thestranger.com/seattle/a-good-author-is-hard-to-find/

BTW, what the heck is wrong with lattes?!!!

Stephanie B said...

Hear! Hear!

Nothing threatens the United States (or, actually, the world), in my opinion, so much as our divisiveness.

Here's for less of it.

lknick said...

Re: lattes.
The use of the word "latte drinker" by the original poster implies a stereotype of the intellectual and well-educated person who considers him or herself superior to the everyday coffee drinker.
It's like the difference between a single malt Scotch drinker as opposed to a blended Scotch drinker. We who drink single malt know that it is only meant for we gods, and not for the common folk.
:)

Lynn Viehl said...

I wonder if I should have read this, seeing as I'm a half white trash, half redneck former L.A. resident who sips both latte and tea, and shops at Wal-Mart. Or can I call myself a semi-real American? Maybe just every other Tuesday . . .

Seamus said...

I read about half the comments and find that I can't improve on their support for your response. I would like to add that it scares me that this divisive hate-mongering appears to be surpassing baseball as the national passtime. If you can Palin-ize your audience, you have succeeded. America, can we stop this, please?

Jille said...

Wal-mart=patriotism? we're in trouble.

Tricia said...

Doesn't Wal-Mart buy everything from China?

Literary Cowgirl said...

I have always wondered why people like this claim they are the only ones to really love X, but all they can talk about is how much the hate component A or B of X. Where is the love?

Kate Halleron said...

Iknick, *one* liberal says something you find offensive, and all liberals are guilty of it?

I'm a liberal Christian with both atheist and conservative friends. I'll talk to anyone as long as the discussion stays civil. Doesn't matter what you have to say, if you're not polite, no one of any worth will listen to you.

kitty said...

The guy isn't necessarily a schmuck or an idiot or a village idiot. He just doesn't know how to a query letter.
...

JEM said...

Love. It. I used to read the slush pile at a publisher and this brought back misty-eyed memories for me.