Like many people, I wrote stories as a kid and penned articles for the school paper. I even took it a step further by writing music reviews for a struggling but smart music weekly, until two years of treading water became too much for the small staff and we decided to get “real jobs”. We put away childish things…
Years later, through a series of odd circumstances I wound up on staff for a few software magazines, and although it didn’t pay a lot, I was getting paid. A professional writer – imagine that! And although games and fantasy sports were not yet popular, there was an audience of like-minded fanatics wanting to discuss and interact and argue and celebrate common ground. I enjoyed it too, for a while; it was fun. But it wasn’t music or film or television, and eventually I got bored.
When I started writing about music again, I did it for a very simple reason: I had to. I felt an urge to express my thoughts and opinions in writing, even if at first I was only doing it for myself. Eventually I started to share what I wrote with friends, and was even lucky enough to find a few magazines that wanted to use my work. Although the pay ( when there was any) was pitiful, I didn’t care. I worked a job because I had to. I wrote because I wanted to.
But time marches on, and alongside progress and improvement are the casualties of the obsolete and the dying. For a writer, that means another year of watching the printed publication go the way of the dinosaur. Magazines have always had a frightening mortality rate; the vast majority not marking their six month anniversary. But along with the move from pulp to pixel, the tumbling economy is now dealing the death blow – the loss of advertising dollars. Megacorps like Gannett are slashing staff in a panic, so you can imagine the impact upon a small independent magazine that survives issue-to-issue by the generosity of tiny labels and struggling artists. I wrote for many outstanding print magazines over the past ten years, and as I type this only one of them still exists…for now.
So in a way, I guess it’s gone full circle. Here I am again, writing not for money nor accolades but because I want to and need to. I’m going to ramble on about music I enjoy, films that move me, comics who make me laugh, events that make me think. Opinions, interviews and features about pop culture where the quality of the work is what matters…not the noteriety of the artist.
And yes, I’m doing this for me…but I hope you enjoy it too.