2 September 2009 How to sell a magazine in 2009
To say that I am broke is a staggering understatement. I’m much more than broke, which means I have significantly less than $0 to my name. I owe more than I know to the golems of the student loan industry, and my mother tells me that the Notre Dame Federal Credit Union demands full payment of my $1,500 credit card in the next 10 days or they will litigate, whatever that means (I called them this morning; the woman I need to speak with is on vacation until September 8th).
I have worked (for pay) less than two months in the last two years — hence my debt obligations’ neglect — and only just got a job two weeks ago waiting tables.
My wages have thus far been modest. I have $187 to show for these first two weeks (but I’m told I will earn more in my next two, and beyond, now that the House & Senate have returned from paid vacation). I eat Ramen for breakfast, lunch, and dinner; and occasionally splurge on a $1 can of A&W root beer in the only Union Station side-shop that sells them.
I am poverty in 2009. Five dollars to me is a fortune; and so I spent a fortune (well…$4.99) on this month’s Rolling Stone.
“Sick and Wrong: How Washington is screwing up healthcare reform and why it may take a revolt to fix it” by Matt Taibbi is an article I’ve waited for with baited breath. He mentioned working on it every now and again in his blog (see blogroll), and after reading and rereading his fine coverage of the financial meltdown (see “The Big Takeover“), I knew it would be a must-read.
I awaited it; it was published, but not online. RollingStone.com offers only a discussion thread of it, where people who had already read it could weigh in and remind me that I hadn’t read it, and that I wanted to real bad. And so in Union Station last week I made a decision to forgo A&Ws indefinitely and ignore the magazine’s irrelevant cover story about The Beatles, along with the rest of the magazine’s content, and purchase RS1086 for Taibbi’s article.
It is worth every penny.
Content on paper that people buy is quickly going out of fashion. Many morons blame the Internet, the recession, or both. I’ve long blamed the content itself, and the content contributors have laughed their way to layoffs. Their content is journalism, they say, and journalism is trustworthy & necessary, etc.
This may be true, but clearly it no longer sells. Taibbi does. But then again, Taibbi is something more. He is a journalist, sure — trustworthy, necessary, etc — but he is a personality, too: subjective, aggressive, vulgar, and sharp. I look forward to his next piece, even if it ain’t free.