Editors and agents have the same mindset. With so many options and limited room, they're a choosey bunch. They haunt writers' conferences, view query letters, read full or partial proposals, and dig through slush piles. I imagine their excitement at finding that special manuscript rivals the rush I get when I see a teacup that stands out from the crowd.
Do you have a special collection? How do you find the right items? With your writing, how do you make your manuscript/article stand out from the all the other submissions?