How to Be Just Slightly Too Late for Issue 450
Oh dear. It seems another year has gone by, and you just weren't able to write the perfect article in time for a landmark issue of the Neopian Times. If you're an avatar collector, this is probably horrible news. I can relate to the feeling. Too many years have gone by, and I just wasn't able to work fast enough for publication in the Times. Not that I haven't tried. It just never seems to work out in my favour.
I'm sure many Neopians have the same problem as I do. We ache for the avatar for the whole year, and then when the time comes, it just doesn't happen. So I've decided to write a guide for all the people like me about how to be just slightly too late for the landmark issues.
The easiest way to be just slightly too late for acceptance into a landmark issue of the Neopian Times is to procrastinate. It's a simple method, and one that absolutely everyone is capable of. All you have to do is figure out what brilliant idea you're going to use in your article several months in advance, and then not write it. You've still got the idea in the back of your mind. It's never been done before, and it will most definitely be worthy of publication... when you get around to writing it, that is. When you have only three weeks left (cough, cough) you need to rush and do a mad scramble to finish on time. You might make it in on time, if you're unlucky. But if you're aiming to be just slightly too late, the odds are in your favour.
2. Don't Do Your Research
If there's anything an informative, high-quality Neopian Times article needs to be, it's well-researched. Say you found that perfect idea and you've written it up and sent it off to the editor. Suddenly, you realise you haven't cited any sources. You have no backing for your claim, but it's too late to correct. You've already sent it away. You now have no choice but to hastily research and edit your article. When you've finished that, you send your second draft off to the editor and hope it gets accepted. This time, it is. But, alas, if you had only researched the first time, you would have made it! Instead, you're published, which is awesome, but you're published the week after you need to be. Congratulations! You're just slightly too late!
3. Write an Illegible Story
You've written everything on time, and you have a sense of pride in your heart as you send in your article with several weeks to spare before the landmark issue comes up. A few weeks later, though, you finally hear back from TNT, and they deliver the horrible news: your story was rejected because of excessive spelling/grammar errors. What a shame. All that waiting and you weren't even accepted! By now, you are running seriously short on time. You return to your first draft and spend several days perfecting all the issues, and then it's finally ready to be submitted again. Congratulations! You were held over this time! Your publication will run some time in the next few weeks, almost definitely too late for the issue you're aiming for. Good work!
4. Acknowledge the Existence of Jelly World
Oh, wait a second, you want your article to be published some time. You just don't want it published in time for that special secret avatar. Ignore this point, then. Don't acknowledge the existence of Jelly World if you want your piece published. Since, you know, Jelly World isn't real.
Disclaimer: Jelly World does not exist. TNT does not endorse the perpetuation of this hoax. It's best to just drop it. Seriously. There's no such thing.
5. Get an Editorial Question Answered
You think this will work. You honestly do. If they answer your question, your name appears in the Times, right? This means you get the avatar, since technically you were in the issue, right? Nope. Not how it works. Maybe you're asking TNT some question that you need to finish your article or something like that. But editorial questions don't count. If this is your plan to get that fantastic white Weewoo (which also don't exist, by the way. *shifty eyes*) avatar, this won't work. You'll have to hastily write an article, short story, or comic. With any luck, that new piece you did will make it in exactly one week after you need it to be! Hooray!
6. Don't Meet Length Requirements
You've written a truly sensational article. This will change how all of Neopia views your topic. Nothing will be the same. You've exposed the deepest secrets of the most prolific Neopian figures. You've found out Fyora's darkest secret, say, or found exclusive information from a source that was close to Dr. Sloth in his childhood. However, you just have an impossible time stretching your story to the required length. Try as you might, you just can't seem to get that darned word count high enough. You rephrase and reword time and time again. Finally, sweet success! You've just barely made it. You can squeak by and submit the article now! And, guess what? There are two days before the next landmark issue is published! You are absolutely guaranteed to make it in too late for this week's Times!
There you have it, ladies and gentlemen. A handful of methods that will get you into the Neopian Times. These methods will be especially successful if you submit now, after the landmark issue. With any luck, you too can be just slightly too late to get the beautiful, rare avatar that so many collectors covet!
In all seriousness, now. The Neopian Times is a highly competitive writing forum. Only the very best works are published. There's absolutely no reason why a person can't be published with a lot of hard work. The landmark issues are especially competitive, since everyone is working toward the same goal of the avatar. You can make it in in time, but if you're trying for the avatar, I would highly recommend not following the advice specified above... mostly because this advice will get you published just slightly too late.
Disclaimer: I cannot guarantee that any of the methods mentioned in the above article will result in publication. Best of luck to all writers!