Guidelines if you want to publish

Dear Sir, Madame, or Other:

Enclosed is our latest version of MS #85-02-22-RRRRR, that is, the

re-re-re-revised version of our paper. Choke on it. We have again

rewritten the entire manuscript from start to finish. We even changed

the goddamned running head! Hopefully we have suffered enough by now to

satisfy even your bloodthirsty reviewers.

I shall skip the usual point-by-point description of every single change

we made in response to the critiques. After all, it is fairly clear that

your reviewers are less interested in details of scientific procedure

than in working out their personality problems and sexual frustrations

by seeking some sort of demented glee in the sadistic and arbitrary

exercise of tyrannical power over hapless authors like ourselves who

happen to fall into their clutches. We do understand that, in view of

the misanthropic psychopaths you have on your editorial board, you need

to keep sending them papers, for if they weren't reviewing manuscripts

they'd probably be out mugging old ladies or clubbing baby seals to

death. Still, from this batch of reviewers, C was clearly the most

hostile, and we request that you not ask her or him to review this

revision. Indeed, we have mailed letter bombs to four or five

people we suspected of being reviewer C, so if you send the manuscript

back to them the review process could be unduly delayed.

Some of the reviewers comments we couldn't do anything about. For

example, if (as reviewer C suggested), several of my ancestry were

indeed drawn from other species, it is too late to change that. Other

suggestions were implemented, however,

and the paper has improved and benefited. Thus, you suggested that we

shorten the manuscript by 5 pages, and we were able to do this very

effectively by altering the margins and printing the paper in a

different font with a smaller typeface. We agree

with you that the paper is much better this way.

One perplexing problem was dealing with suggestions #13-28 by reviewer

B. As you may recall (that is, if you even bother reading the reviews

before doing your decision letter), that reviewer listed 16 works the

he/she felt we should cite in this paper. These were on a variety of

different topics, none of which had any relevance to our work that we

could see. Indeed, one was an essay on the Spanish-American War from a

high school literary magazine. the only common thread was that all 16

were by the same author, presumably someone reviewer B greatly admires

and feels should be more widely cited. To handle this, we have modified

the introduction and added, after the review of relevant literature, a

subsection entitled "Review of Irrelevant Literature" that discusses

these articles and also duly addresses some of the more asinine

suggestions by other reviewers.

We hope that you will be pleased with this revision and finally

recognize how urgently deserving of publication this work is. If not,

then you are an unscrupulous, depraved monster with no shred of human

decency. You ought to be in a cage. May

whatever heritage you come from be the butt of the next round of ethnic

jokes. If you do accept it, however, we wish to thank you for your

patience and wisdom throughout this process and to express our

appreciation of you scholarly insights. To repay you, we would be happy

to review some manuscripts for you; please send us the next manuscript

that any of these reviewers sends to your journal.

Assuming you accept this paper, we would also like to add a footnote

acknowledging your help with this manuscript and to point out that we

liked this paper much better the way we originally wrote it but you held

the editorial shotgun to our heads and forced us to chop, reshuffle,

restate, hedge, expand, shorten, and in general convert a meaty paper

into stir-fried vegetables. We couldn't or wouldn't, have done it

without your input.


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This document was updated 27/05/00.