Sunday, June 01, 2008

Senses of Humor Can't Touch but Some Smell

I've been accused of having a very odd sense of humor.  If you, like me, found Strunk and White's "The Elements of Style" a fun read that made you laugh outloud at several points, you get my sense of humor.  Yes, I still reread that book not just for the education but for the entertainment.

Those of you who know me won't be surprised that I found the following guidelines both educational and entertaining.  Enjoy, or if not, at least be edified.  

This is a small portion of Clarkesworld Magazine's Submission Guidelines.  Any errors are my bad.  Guidelines sometimes change; don't hold me responsible if something unpleasant happens to you as a result of reading and/or following these guidelines.  You know the drill.  Besides, if you successfully sue me for something I posted in good faith with credit attributed the best way I know how, bear in mind that if I had money I'd hire a maid, for starters.

Though no particular setting, theme, or plot is anathema to us, the following are likely hard sells:

  • stories in which a milquetoast civilian government is depicted as the sole obstacle to either catching some depraved criminal or to an uncomplicated military victory
  • stories in which the words "thou" or "thine" appear
  • talking cats
  • talking swords
  • stories where the climax is dependent on the spilling of intestines
  • stories where FTL travel is as easy as is it on television shows or movies
  • time travel too
  • stories that depend on some vestigial belief in Judeo-Christian mythology in order to be frightening (i.e., Cain and Abel are vampires, the End Times are a' comin', Communion wine turns to Christ's literal blood and it's HIV positive, Satan's gonna getcha, etc.)
  • stories about rapist-murderer-cannibals
  • stories about young kids playing in some field and discovering ANYTHING. (a body, an alien craft, Excalibur, ANYTHING).
  • stories about the stuff we all read in Scientific American three months ago
  • stories where the Republicans, or Democrats, or Libertarians, or the Spartacist League, etc. take over the world and either save or ruin it
  • your AD&D game
  • "funny" stories that depend on, or even include, puns
  • sexy vampires, wanton werewolves, or lusty pirates
  • stories where the protagonist is either widely despised or widely admired simply because he or she is just so smart and/or strange
  • stories that take place within an artsy-fartsy bohemia as written by an author who has clearly never experienced one
  • your trunk stories

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