McSweeney’s Cease and Desist, by Jordan Lints


849 Valencia St.

San Francisco, CA



Sept. 1, 2013

Jordan Lints




Dear Mr. Lints:

We are writing to notify you that McSweeney’s will no longer be accepting any submissions you send for publication on their website, Quarterly magazine, Believer magazine, Wholphin (we don’t think you know what this is), or any other platforms of publication created in the past, present, or future. Accordingly, you are hereby directed to


As understanding and appreciation of the website unfortunately cannot be determined based on the suffocating number of submissions you have tendered, we feel it is important to remind you (or perhaps inform you for the first time) that the company only accepts good writing. Quality writing. Stuff akin to The New Yorker’s “Shouts and Murmurs.” Even though it seems that any guy with facial hair, suppressed fart jokes, and Shakespeare imitation abilities can get published, they still need to have that special something. You do not. You need to understand this.

It is demanded that you immediately:

  • Cease and desist all contact with McSweeney’s, its employees, employees’ relatives, and/or employees’ pets. Forms of contact include but are not limited to email, postal mail, telephone calls, text messages, sext messages, telegrams (singing or otherwise), carrier pigeon, Morse code, Pig Latin, skywriting, interpretive dance, adorable-baby viral video, talking dolphin, and paint-chested men at athletic events
  • Remove McSweeney’s’ email address from all online and physical address books
  • Remove any URL containing the word “McSweeney’s” from internet favorites and/or bookmarks from your personal computer’s history
  • Seek out other companies, websites, magazines, webzines, blogs, pamphlets, school newspapers, newsletters, Christmas letters, chain letters, stairwells, and highway underpasses that accept submissions
  • Write better;
  • Go outside more;
  • Engage in conversation with alive things;
  • Consider a different—and, honestly, more productive, respected, and better-paying—career.
  • If you do not comply with the above demands, please be advised that McSweeney’s will pursue all creative and humiliating remedies, including posting of third grade yearbook photo, telling your neighbor what really poisoned his cat, releasing the purposes of your prescription ointments, renaming “sinus infections” “Jordan infections,” and a public reading of that poem you wrote in seventh grade. In addition, McSweeney’s is entitled to use your failure to comply as evidence of your complete inability to take a hint and is not above publishing a list of examples of past instances of said inability. Correspondingly, failure to meet the above demands will serve as another life failure and really, sweetie? Really?

    If you or your mom have any questions, feel free to write them in birdseed across your lawn.


    Every editor of McSweeney’s

    Jordan Lints is a girl Jordan, she lives in (read: near) Chicago, and she can clearly get published elsewhere, so there! (This is where she would list those elsewheres, but outside of Punchnel’s, the other sites have died, so really, there’s nothing.)

    The Humor Section features a piece of original humor writing each week. To submit, send an email to Brian Boone.

    McSweeney’s Cease and Desist, by Jordan Lints