Now the Magazine was a job I lucked into last spring via a Nelson friend, I was familiar with it, sort-of an internet come to print in a high-gloss format, quarterly, published on different themes. I liked it. And as she worked for them doing their books she lined me up a job, some writing on spec, and I took it on remotely from Calgary.

They'd send me proofs of the layouts, lists of the bands they were looking for print on, and I'd hack out the articles. The research aspect of it was interesting, I learned far more about a lot of bands then I ever knew, and was introduced to a lot of styles of music that I never would have been otherwise. The format of the magazine meant that I would read up on certain artists or groups - Led Zepplin, Pink Floyd, for example, Wikipedia articles, often in the league of 30 to 40 thousand words, then condense them into a 100 word salacious factoid meant to give the reader some slight titillation and urge to explore further. 

It was harder than it sounds. Some of the articles would come pretty easy, but given the "equality" - meaning that Joni Mitchell and Leonard Cohen would each get the same number of words, say, as Randy Bachman, well, it didn't seem fair. It didn't matter, it was experience in an industry I was curious about, and my theories and understanding of the whoring ethics of journalism were proven. Meaning that it would have been far, far better to be writing to my own ends, but like a lot of journalists and copywriters, this was to be my springboard...

After a couple of months of slow and fractured communications I drove out to Nelson the meet the people with whom I'd long corresponded with, a small office out of a house, nice folks, putting a face to my prose, as it were, as they (and I) were curious...

In the end the magazine fell through, I didn't understand why but it was explained to me as follows. The publisher/owner had brought in another writer from Calgary, highly recommended, they had an "understanding" which revolved around the writer expecting to be paid around $10K per month, and the publisher capping his salary at $2K per month, and adding to his list of responsibilities some graphic design and web presence...

The writer, meanwhile, for want of anyplace to stay, had settled into the publishers house and helped himself to his wife...

In the end the publisher tanked the magazine, fired everyone that worked for him (or laid off, it was contract work, after all, and the magazine was supposedly done), then packed his wife off to Bali...

Random letters followed, demanding refunds for work paid, as the magazine hadn't gone to print, checking with my friend I found that everyone was getting them, and the best thing to do was ignore them.

Thus ended my short and inglorious career in journalism...