NYRM2008
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I got your letter to the editor right here.

By David Riedel

Dear NYRM Reader,
The “Letters to the Editor” page is my favorite section of any magazine. Most letters tend to be well-reasoned, thoughtful, courteous and predictable. But if you’re lucky, somewhere on the page there’s also an evil doppelganger letter, full of thinly veiled rage or outright lunacy. And these crazed communiqués are nearly always about something that thoughtful, courteous, predictable people are unlikely to obsess about, like whether it’s acceptable to wear white after Labor Day or whether Pope Benedict was a Nazi.

Imagine my dismay at the lack of a letters page in The New York Review of Magazines. My solution: to ask editors from other publications to submit their favorite unpublished missives and epistles. I mean, if some of the stuff they publish is off the wall, imagine what they leave out.

Several editors supplied me with a selection from the bumper crop of crazy dispatches they receive but can’t—or won’t—publish. We at NYRM fear nothing but have limited legal resources, so here’s an anonymous mishmash of readers’ thoughts: a Frankenletter, if you will, footnoted for easy identification. Can you guess which magazine each line came from by the tone of its looniness?

Thanks to The Believer, Timothy McSweeney’s Quarterly Concern, Glamour, Esquire, Bitch and The Economist. Cheers!

Dave




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Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism
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