Copyright 1999 W. Bruce Cameron
Here at the Cameron Column world headquarters, we're fond of saying that we are read in 52 countries (and despised by people in every one of 'em!). Our evidence of this geographic hegemony is (a) a survey we conducted two years ago, and (b) our belief that Texas is a separate country--maybe even its own planet.
Well, given our growth, both in subscribers and waistline, it's time to poll everyone to find out where you're at. (That's Texan for, "where you live.") If you are interested in participating, please send me an e-mail and tell me the city, province/state, and country of your residence. You can add other comments if you want, but it would be very helpful if you would make your location the first line of the e-mail. (Our tech department is going to try to do something fancy here, I can just sense it.) Send your e-mail to this DIFFERENT address: email@example.com. I will post the results to my web site. Thanks! -- Bruce
In a lapse of journalistic judgment which rivals the "Dewey Beats Truman" headline, the Denver Rocky Mountain News has recently announced that it will begin publishing The Cameron Column -- though that's not what they're going to call it. (Alternative names are "Filler," and "Well, Otherwise This Space Would Be Blank.")
This development has important implications for my Internet-based readers, all of whom must move to Denver over the next 60 days or face severe penalties. That's a joke. Actually, it WILL have some impact, but before I get into that, I do want to say "thank you" to everyone who has accepted the Cameron Column over the years. I started with only six readers back in November of 1995, and without threats or begging have grown to 40,000 readers today--proving that the instructions for unsubscribing are too difficult to understand.
Okay, maybe some begging.
The point is, the "Rocky" (as we professional and glamorous columnists affectionately refer to it,) would never have considered running my column if it didn't already have a track record on the Internet. It's my readers who have established this track record, and so it is to them I owe my success.
In return, I'd like to do something nice for everybody, so you are all invited over to my house for dinner tonight.
Now here are the really horrifying implications: The Denver Rocky Mountain News is running my column on a weekly basis. The Cameron Column will continue to be a twice-a-month publication on the Internet. Thus, the people in Denver will "enjoy" twice as many columns as those who don't read the Rocky (and with half the calories!).
I agree that this is unfair. Here's my suggestion: write me at firstname.lastname@example.org and tell me what daily newspaper YOU read. I will track down the e-mail address of that newspaper and send it back to you. Then you can write your editors and demand to know what they are going to do about this unjust situation. (You could make this demand for justice part of your survey response, if you like. It'll drive the tech department crazy. Well, except the tech "department" is actually just one guy who keeps saying, "I don't want to do this any more.")
Yes, I agree that this idea is "nakedly self-serving." But wouldn't you like to be known as the Person Who Brought W. Bruce Cameron to your city? Imagine the fame, the protests, the bomb threats...
This devious plot isn't really all that unrealistic, you know. I'm hoping to attract the attention of a syndicate--not the kind that tells you "Louie the Knife sleeps with the fishes," but the other kind. This will lead to me being a popular writer and from there to being declared Emperor of Europe. And the way to get a syndicate to say, "hey, this Cameron guy is attracting our attention!" is to have my column picked up by more than one newspaper.
Many of you are probably wondering, "Does this mean an end to the Internet version of The Cameron Column and why not?" The answer is, no, I will continue to have both a web site and an e-mailed version of my column. And my newsprint essays won't always be the same as my electronic columns--the Rocky has this pesky policy about "quality."
I've always wanted to have a weekly column in a newspaper and to be Brad Pitt. Thanks to my subscribers, I've achieved the first--and if you have any ideas on this Brad Pitt thing, I'd like to hear 'em.
Copyright W. Bruce Cameron 1999
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