Pre-Crumpled Letter

“This letter has been pre-crumpled to assist you with a more efficient disposal process”

This is the opening line of a recent letter I wrote to some of the top business book publishers in the country;

• Barron’s
• Bloomberg
• Doubleday
• Gotham
• McGraw-Hill
• Penguin

I know they get tens of thousands of manuscripts and book proposals every year. How in the world can I get past the clutter ?

Be it that I teach creative thinking for a living, I am trying to drink my own Kool-Aid.  I am trying to be creative. Avoid the normal. Everyone else will send them a formal looking proposal. I am trying to be different.

There is a 99.9999% chance that they will throw my letter away the instance they open the package, if they open it at all. So why not play to that expectation?

I am sending a copy of my latest book “Da Vinci and the 40 Answers” to these publishers with the Pre-Crumpled letter in a flat bubble-wrap envelope.

Here is what the letter looks like; crumpled_letter

If you want to know what the letter says, I have included it below.

Hell….I don’t know if it will work or not, but what do have to loose?

You should be asking yourself that all the time. When an opportunity presents itself, don’t just blow it off. Ask yourself this;

• What will it cost me in time and money to pursue this idea?
• What are the consequences if it doesn’t work?

In my case a few bucks for the book, postage and an afternoon of my time.

The consequences?……none, I have nothing to loose.

I hope they have a sense of humor.

Mark L  Fox

Here is the text of the letter


This letter has been pre-crumpled to assist you with a more efficient disposal process.

“Wonderful Book!
Fun, practical, and enjoyable, Da Vinci and the 40 Answers book deserves a wide audience.”
Roger von Oech, Author of “A Whack on the Side of the Head,”
Thank you for giving me 2 minutes of your time. I know you are extremely busy so I will be brief.

“Da Vinci and the 40 Answers is my latest book. It is “A Playbook for Creativity and Fresh Ideas”. It is based on the principles of TRIZ, the theory of inventive problem solving.

These are the same tools and techniques used by NASA.

But I have made it fun, interesting, and educational for the masses unlike all the other TRIZ books out there.

The book is currently published by a small publisher called the Wizard Academy Press. I want to partner with you, the leading publisher of business books, to allow it to be taken to the next level. That is why I am contacting you.

2 minutes of your time is all I ask, and if you made it this far the first one is gone.

For the 2nd minute, randomly open the book to any page.

Just read one page. Any page. What do you think?

p.s. (If you made it this far….hurray……you didn’t throw it away….yet!)
Mark L. Fox

About admin

Mark L. Fox is a leading authority on teaching practical creative thinking techniques for business. Mark was the youngest Chief Engineer ever on the Space Shuttle program at the age of 31. He received NASA’s highest recognition of “Launch Honoree” at the age of 23. Mark has an undergraduate degree in Chemical Engineering with an MBA. Having held top management positions in Rocket Science, Aircraft Hydraulics, Engineering Services, Customer Service, Software, and e-Business, Mark has an extremely diversified background.


  1. People throw my stuff in the trash all the time, THIS is a great idea. Sorta like Stop, Drop and Roll, this is bound to slap attention and create just enough curiosity and WTH to float your stuff to the top of the heap.


  2. Hi, interest post. I’ll write you later about few questions!

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