Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Death of "one-size-fits-all"

By Connie S. Hall

Wave goodbye to the time of “one-size-fits-all” – it’s gone. No longer in today's competitive marketplace can you be all things to all people. From home building, clothing, and music, people are now getting what they want. Today customization is a well-known part of the consumer life. Writing is no exception.

We live in an extremely diverse society, and there’s no way we’re all going to agree, even if some of us (me) are right about the best way to do things. Suppose you know with complete confidence that there is a fad diet that works. Would that justify forcing cabbage soup or grapefruit down unwilling throats?

Most publishers read piles and piles of stories. They'd rather be doing almost anything else, especially after they've seen too many of the same type of story. After they read your “one-size-fits-all” cover letter, they will probably put it in the recycle bin or the delete box, and never consider it again.

Publishers want to hear from writers who invest the time and energy necessary to customize their story and cover letter. You shouldn’t write the same as everyone else. You need to have your own style, and make your story stand out. If you write a “one-size-fits-all” story, it might mean your own writing death.

No comments: