Sep 30, 2008
What Was The Word?
At the time it was hard for me to believe that a year had elapsed since I was at Queens Park during Word on the Street. It felt like I was just here, peddling the "VHS RIP" issue. After an extra long winter and a too-short summer, the fall roared into action, and as usual I was barely prepared to launch the new issue, despite the fact that all summer I was moving at a fine clip gathering research for ESR's latest incarnation, the tribute to late-night television, and before I knew it, what with a huge work schedule and feeling of lethargy after hours, I had once again broken a promise to myself not to indulge in this "night before" crunch that always happens.
Saturday afternoon, it was bloody obvious that the new issue wasn't going to exist for the next day, which would be ESR's fifth appearance at Word on the Street. After an anxiety attack (no doubt brought on by overtired-ness), I had succumbed to the realization that I wasn't going to get the new issue done in time, and also pondered not even going to the fair at all. Seriously. With all the stress and frustration in my life, I was not only getting worked up about doing this magazine, but also felt embarrassed about being so. Susan then came up with the brilliant suggestion to cut the issue down. I was still struggling over the content for the midsection, and deep down I knew my heart just wasn't into the content of this section. Since all of the more "personal" stuff (which bookended it) had been completed, I published the issue without its middle, and the result was seamless. (Ultimately, the research I had accumulated for this midsection had been for naught, but I do intend to use it still in a future issue.) And as usual, the new issue debuted under the wire.
Despite my negative feelings the day before, 2008's Word on the Street proved to be a rewarding experience, if in spirit, and not necessarily in coins. (Financially speaking, this was my second-worst year at the show.) Serendipitously, having a smaller (and therefore cheaper) issue helped to move more copies. This industry has become more nickel-and-dime than ever, so it would seem that that for future issues (not including special one-shots like the Corman scrapbook), perhaps smaller would be better. It was encouraging getting notions to "keep it up" from some of the regular readers (one easily forgets why we do what we do), and I am also grateful for the volunteers who really showed up this year, thus making the day move fast, with some fun along the way. So, ladies and gentlemen, for your pleasure, here is the new ESR.. "A Tribute to Late Night Television". It would be remiss without thanking Mike and Anj for helping out on the day, Simon and David for contributing to the new issue, and of course, my deepest thanks go to Susan for her spiritual advisement. Enjoy.