Just a thought – about pizzas, writing and publishers

Why does a round pizza come in a square box?

Why indeed?

Would it make more sense to use a square tray when making a pizza? The logical conclusion of that would be that the box for each pizza could be smaller thus saving on cardboard and therefore less trees cut down. Now I am not in the business of making pizzas, so there is probably a very sound reason why round pizzas are delivered in square boxes.

Too often I hear that writers are like pizza makers who try to cram square pizzas into round boxes, or are wasteful and try to put round pizzas into square boxes. Writers need to study their markets carefully. It is no use sending a children’s picture book text to a publisher who only publishes scientific texts for academics. It sounds a ridiculous example, but I believe it happens all too frequently. Writers who fail to do their homework (read market research) just set themselves up for rejection.

There are many useful resources available to writers these days, including market guides in both printed and electronic form. Successful writers use the internet to do their market research. Many publishers these days publish their writers’ guidelines on their web site. At the very least, check these out before submitting your writing to them.


4 Responses to “Just a thought – about pizzas, writing and publishers”

  1. Sim' says:

    Go down to your local pizza shop one day and watch what they do when they make and roll out the dough.

    Also watch how they put the pizza boxes together.

    There’s a reason pizza is round – it’s far easier to roll a lump of dough out into a roundish shape than a square one.

    There’s a reason that pizza boxes are square – it’s far easier to manufacture and assemble a square box than a round one.

    I’ve done a lot of both (rolling pizza and assembling pizza boxes) in my time 😉

    … but I do get the point of your analogy.

  2. Trevor says:

    I suspected that there would very good reasons for what they do. I am glad that you learned something from all those hours spent making and delivering pizzas – apart from the fact that it was a hard way to make a few dollars.

  3. Sim' says:

    Funnily enough, since I worked the “prime shifts” of Friday and Saturday nights, I often did quite well. I got paid by the delivery rather than by the hour, so when things were really busy, I was sometimes doing $20+ an hour for just cruising around in my car.

    It was hard work when it rained though – even more concentration required to get there quickly and safely (and not too wet).

  4. Trevor says:

    I feel the same way about the deliveries of the Financial Review on Friday nights. I get paid very well to have a pleasant drive down to TB once a week. It usually takes about a hour from the time I leave to arrival back home. That’s if they are ready when I get there. A few weeks ago the collating machine spat the dummy and they did some by hand (!) until it started up again. It only delayed me 15 minutes as they always do my deliveries first. While we won’t get rich on the proceeds it helps to fill the fuel tank.