Life Changingly Awesome Query Letters: Part 1: Outside Magazine

Brief Pop Culture Sidenote re: Bachelor: Officer and a Gentleman: See? It was Tessa!!! When has the NY Post ever been wrong about anything? According to the results from the Bachelor, never. Lesson: Never trust women named Bevin. Always trust the tabloids. Always.

Moving on…Were you worried, friends? Did you think I had gone underground? Or quit to pursue a career in urban dance? Or just become lazy and depressed, like AJ on the Soprano’s? No. Unlike the NY Post, you got none of that right. The real reason I’ve been on radio silent was because I had to write and turn in in my actual magazine column, which kept me from blogging. And exercising. But now I’m back, eating a Peanut Butter Cookie Luna Bar (Just for Women, my ass) and ready to introduce a new installment on the blog: Life Changingly Awesome Query Letters. Expect a new one to a different magazine every few weeks. Or better yet, don’t expect one. That way, you’ll be totally surprised when it comes.

To:Christopher Keyes
Editor
Outside Magazine

From: Kevin Alexander
Re: Query!!!;)

Dear Mr. Keyes,

ROAAARR!!!!! Sorry, I didn’t mean to scare you. You’re quite safe. Physically at least. But your mind is about to be scared out of its complacency. What you just read was the sound that a bear makes. Transitionally, did you know that Panda Bears cannot walk on their hind legs? Of course you didn’t. You’re just one man. Which is exactly why you need my services. Plus bears, like hippies, live Outside in the wilderness. Vis a Vis: they are a natural fit in your magazine.

When Calvin Coolidge said, “Time heals all wounds,” he’d obviously never seen the wound inflicted by a bear on a moose in the driveway of a couple in Alaska that I just watched on Youtube. You should Google it, it’s horrible stuff. But what would be more horrible for the readers of Outside magazine is if you don’t include the obvious Best American Travel Writing 2008 story I’m about to drop on your ass.

Here’s the payoff: I’d like to write a 6000-7000 word personal essay about my experience with bears. Now, because I’ve never actually seen a bear in person, a lot of this (3000-4000 words, at least) will be focused around a dream I had several years ago involving Daisy Fuentes, my Physics teacher from senior year of high school wearing a Skip-it, and a player from the Chicago Bears. The other 2000 words will probably be a pro-con list of reasons to keep a bear as a pet (example pro: companionship). Also, I can totally see a sidebar that lists famous bears and where they are now. And don’t get me started on the art!!!

Although, admittedly, I haven’t actually read your magazine myself, one of my good friends, Geoff, won a subscription when he switched over his credit card and so I’ve seen your covers. Fit, handsome men with a penchant for wetsuits and Dri-Fit workout gear, mountain peaks, and other worldly pleasures. And while these things are very nice (I myself am a very fit, extremely  handsome man), have you considered the bump in circulation you’d get if you threw a Panda mountain biking on the cover? Plus–and now I’m just thinking aloud–if the Panda wasn’t wearing a biking helmet, wouldn’t that sh*t be illegal and thusly controversial? Like it or not, controversy and Panda’s sell f*cking magazines. That’s just a fact.

Anyway, I should wrap this up, because I know you like things to stay on one page, but this is the portion where I list my qualifications. I’m a writer, Chrissy, a writer with a (newfound) passion for bears. I’ve written for a sh*t ton of magazines, I’ve got infinity clips, but I also have dreams, some of which involve bears, which I wrote about in the third paragraph. So how’s about you and I get together over some lunch (Nobu is fine) and make this magic into a reality? It’s the least you can do.

ROAAARRR! (Jk, Chris. Jk)

Kevin Alexander

ps- I know we’re supposed to negotiate for payment, but I’ll tell you: you give me 50 cents 4 bucks a word right now and I’ll take the photo’s of the Panda myself.
pps- As a bonus showcasing my photographing acumen, I’ve also enclosed a photo of my nephew playing in the yard, who, you must admit, is very cute (strong genetics). But I’m going to need it back. And before the holidays.

Pictured Below: A Non-Panda trying to burn off the calories from the moose, and a Skip It, the “in” toy of 1987.

You might also like:

  • No Related Posts

9 thoughts on “Life Changingly Awesome Query Letters: Part 1: Outside Magazine

  1. Nikki

    I love it. It has me hooked. I really was jolted right out of my complacency. I only vaguely remember that Skip It toy… perhaps because of the whole tripping and falling on my head issue with it.

  2. Kevin Alexander

    Baird, I think Skip-its had a hell of a run through the late 80s and early 90s… i remember using one (it was my sister’s…um, right? Right?) right around the same time I was rocking Umbro shorts, Hypercolor T-shirts and Samba’s, which,unfortunately for me, could have been anytime between 1987-1999.

    And Shelly, thank you for your generous compliment. I write a bi-monthly column for Writer’s Digest called "This Writer’s Life" (as you may have guessed) and contribute frequently to Boston Magazine as well, doing stories about youth culture…and C list reality stars. I also enjoy Luna bars.

  3. Baird

    Um, are you trying to age me? Because I was 1 in ’87, and pink Skip-Its figured largely in my childhood.
    Innacuracy will kill your chances with Outside, Kevin. If the YouTube bears don’t get to you first.

  4. Mary

    That was, er, interesting to say in the least!

    Kevin, you never fail to surprise me! I just hope that that poor editor really didn’t have to read that query letter…:P

    Mary 😉

COMMENT