How did I just discover this?
I empathize so strongly with this writing, I can't tell you. I, too, have hardened myself in the furnaces of editorial assistant-ship, and the slush is just what this writer describes. And the phone calls.
But god, how did I never think of the editor-who-doesn't-exist? Brilliant!
**However, I must note that I never became as down on writers as this columnist seems to have. I saw myself headed down that road, and Took Steps to prevent the impending catastrophe. You can't think writers are consistently batshit and still work collaboratively with them. Some people go through the fire of slush and come out a cinder. Thank Heavens that wasn't me.