As a writer, I realize it is a royal pain in the ass to figure out the picky preferences listed the submission guidelines for each magazine. In fact, I've seen a few magazines where the guidelines were so complicated I decided it was not worth my time.
But as an editor, I have a simple request: READ THE SUBMISSION GUIDLINES! Why? I don't want to waste my time reading something we can't use, and I don't want to waste your time sending us something we can't use.
So, what if your story does not quite fit within our guidelines but you think we'd love it? Query us first, or, at the very least, admit that your story falls outside of the guidelines in the cover letter. Thanks--I feel better now.