John Scalzi mentions the education of Tor editor Patrick Nielsen Hayden. Or, more precisely, the lack thereof:
Yes, there are people who have done well without college or even high school diplomas; allow me to point at my own fiction editor, Patrick Nielsen Hayden, an autodidact of the first order and one of the smartest people I know.
While I am second to no man in expressing serious doubt regarding the effectiveness and importance of a college education for most people, I rather suspect there may be a direct connection between the gentleman’s lack of an education and the way in which so many Tor books absolutely and utterly and completely suck from a literary perspective.
As Spacebunny once muttered in exasperation while determinedly slogging her way through yet another execrable hardcover: “who on Earth keeps giving these people book contracts?” Answer: a guy without a high school diploma. Thus is great American literature born….
Lest you wish to consider this some sort of sour grapes, I note that despite my membership in the SFWA, I have never submitted a single book proposal to Tor or any science fiction/fantasy publisher except Pocket Books.