Of course there are a lot of categories that don't have an active editor, and in those cases knowing an editor who doesn't manage that category isn't going to help you. All the editor can do is create the listing and push it to the category with unreviewed status, which is pretty much the same as what happens when you submit your site.
I think DMOZ is a luck at the draw kind of game. Yes, there are editors who like their job and don´t care who owns a site as long as it´s useful, but if your website topic falls into a category edited by someone who is out to promote himself and his friends only, good luck getting listed. ;)
I think it's true, i submitted various websites over the time but no one was accepted.
Am making money on my new wine directory--free wine and xxx$$ to advertise
Online Wine Directory-Wine in California-Wine in Washington-Wine in Oregon-Wine in Australia-France Wine - WineInUSA.com-Online Wine Directory
Well i,l tell why u need to start every directory as a free one and then after a nice ALEXA and GOOGLE rank make it a PAY only.
I Started three directories. I made two of them Paid ones and spend a healthy amount of money on back links building and stuff(no traffic till the GOOGLe PR update). the third one, as it was free had nice traffic and i did not spend any money just did free submissions.
After the GOOGLE PR update see what happened:
the two paid dierectories PR = 3 and 2
The free directory with no money spent PR = 5
The two directories are free
the one that did not cost me any money is earning me very nice livings.