It just occurred to me why this part of the process is daunting (this blogging thing); everybody is doing it. Literally–everybody. Okay, not everybody, but millions of people blog. And I, with my oppositionally defiant personality, have been a blog snob. Or, more precisely, an anti-blog snob. You’ll never catch me blogging, no no no no no. You can see my dilemma. Another aspect of the “everyone’s doing it” construct is that my ego has hit pay dirt in its continual quest to prevent me from living large, using one of its best tools, comparison. Believe me, I never come out on the good end of that one. The pool of comparison possibilities has become unlimited. Oh, yay.
Fortunately, there’s a larger part of me that says, “thank you for sharing,” and goes on. It was that part that led me past the all the insistent goblins intent upon deterring me from the path to newspaperdom. As I hunker down today to finish up the February issue, I give a nod to all those intrepid bloggers, counting myself among them. I don’t have a clue yet how a blog and a magazine fit together, but I intend to find out. I didn’t have a clue three years ago as I was finishing up my second issue, which was my first February issue, what was in store, and today I have empirical evidence that if I don’t listen to the goblins, amazing things transpire.
The murmurs began last January–we’re exploring new things, things like a website. The idea of making a website both fascinated and frightened me. Much the same as the idea of publishing a newspaper. When I committed to my first issue for January 2007, I had never attempted any facet of desktop publishing, not even so much a poster. I had purposefully eschewed all forms of desktop publishing. It scared me and I didn’t like it. How did I know? I just did. But, I had my first deadline. So I hunkered down and figured it out.
Same with the website. I realized as always, my stumbling block is fear. Cyberspace is large and unknown. A hold-in-your-hand-print publication, now there’s something you can know.
I love the paper part of my job; driving to the printer to pick up the pub, the slightly inky smell that permeates the car, delivery day, standing in the Post Office in Stuarts Draft with the box full of subscriber mail-out. All those things are concrete. The truth is, I also love another part–the making of the paper. I do that on my computer using desktop publishing software. I love my desktop publishing software. I make pages, which magically turn into a format my printers can use to magically turn them into newsprint.
The great A-HA for me came when I realized that, as I’m fond of pointing out in my “Dear Readers” column, it doesn’t have to be either/or, it can be both. And so it shall be. I’m excited about moving into the unknown, the land of unlimited possibilities. We won’t necessarily throw the old maps out, but we’ll start employing the new GPS we’ve installed. I invite you to cruise around with us–adventures for all!