One day in the future my grandchildren will look up at me. “Really, Gramma? You remember before Google? What did you do when you had to know something?”
I’ll chuckle and stroke their little faces. “Actually before Google there was the Internet, which we first called the Information Super Highway. And before that we read these things called newspapers and magazines, that were printed on paper and delivered to your house. Books, too, which you bought at a book “store” and then brought home to keep. I’ve still got a few I can show you..”
The Chinese have a kind of backhanded blessing: “May you live in interesting times.” They could well have said, “May you be a writer who works in print for 10 years before they invent web browsers…”
I’ve written for newspapers that no longer exist, for newspapers that were once world-class and are now thin as the Penny Saver they still put in your mailbox (except no longer on Saturdays). I’ve written for a magazine that was once the must-read of every Fortune 500 executive but has now become the hyphenated after-thought of a more nimble online competitor. I’ve been laid waste, along with hundreds of media colleagues, as an aging online giant lurched from one business model to the next trying to figure out how to market content and still turn a double digit profit.
Content. Now I don’t even write for a living anymore. I produce and deliver “content.”
Yeah. It’s been real interesting. But I’m still here, hacking away. Because, you know, somebody has to pay the rent.
Got a gig for me? Hit me up: firstname.lastname@example.org