During his early days as editor of the popular magazine, Saturday Evening Post, George Lorimer did much of the reading of unsolicited stories. This meant endless hours of sitting at the desk, pouring over big stacks of manuscripts, trying to decide which were worthy of publication and which were not. Lorimer became an expert at making these decisions.
One day he received a huffy letter from a would-be writer who had a complaint. “Last week you rejected my story,” she wrote. “I am positive you did not read it, because, as a test, I pasted together pages 14, 15 and 16. The manuscript came back with the pages still pasted. There is no question in my mind but that you are a sham and a disgrace to your profession.”
Lorimer’s reply was succinet: “Madam, at breakfast when I crack open an egg, I don’t have to eat the whole egg to know it is bad.”
Lorimer was a good editor because