Hi there. It's been three months. So...how you been?
Me, I've been busy. As I said in my last post, I was hired in October as editor of New Orleans' weekly paper, Gambit. Since then, I've been
• learning on the job (helped by a great staff)
• going through a punishing election season (dozens of candidate interviews)
• helping launch the paper's new Web site (functional, multimedia, all that stuff)
• planning a 2009 budget (I do not excel at Excel)
• helping with a complete redesign of the dead-tree edition (reaction has been mixed, but mostly positive, and everyone seems to like the new tabloid size)
• being there while the paper rebranded from Gambit Weekly to The Gambit (for various reasons, some obvious)
• and putting out a weekly paper in one week. Every week. Week after week after week.
All this against the backdrop of the publishing industry imploding -- magazines folding and newspapers collapsing, the Great Depression of Media. In some cases, it's market forces at work, business evolution in action; in others, it's gross mismanagement on a Wall Street scale of incompetence. (And I can't stop tracking it all, rather obsessively.)
I've been concentrating on the paper's blog, but I'll be writing more here in the year to come. Topics on my mind these days: the dissolution of the Washington Post Book World (one of my oldest freelance relationships), the grim future for alt-weekly cartoonists (the poor bastards), and why New Orleans, of all places, still has an attraction to, and an affection for, real news. Backwards as we are.
See you back here soon, and regularly.