It’s funny, the difference between my job as online editor at OG and the rest of the editorial staff. They work months in advance—even years—to line up writers, plan photo shoots, edit stories, design the layout, and everything else they do. And as they get closer to closing an issue, they all seem pretty tense and super busy. I try to stay out of their way.
My job, on the other hand, is in real time. I’m forced to live in the present moment a bit more than the rest of the team, between the social media, the day-to-day maintenance of the website, writing newsletters, keeping track of our traffic numbers, etc. Web publishing is immediate—it happens right now. What I do online today will have an effect today. I don’t have the luxury of time.
There is a point, however, when my online & digital duties intersect with the print team. There are a few weeks in our publishing cycle—after it goes to press and before it goes on sale—when my work is centered around the new issue.
And that time is now.
The October/November issue is wrapped up. While it won’t be on the newsstand until the beginning of September, there are copies of it floating around the office. And where the rest of the team has already moved on to the December/January issue and beyond, it’s only now that I get to enjoy the new issue. And it looks great: Very cool features about Japanese maples, hard cider, heirloom apples, and the garden at Colonial Williamsburg, plus tons of helpful information for the garden and kitchen and all around organic living.
This week and next I will be taking the print issue and making it digital. I’m creating online versions of the articles—and am knee-deep in creating the iPad version of the Organic Gardening, too. I like this part of my job for many reasons: it’s always challenging in a beat-the-clock kind of way (I have to get everything built before the issue hits newsstands). Plus, I get to dig in deep, mining the new content for “extra feature” possibilities for the iPad. But what I think I like the most about this time is that it makes me feel like I’m part of the print team, even though they’ve already moved on.