“I think we should be leaving now.”
“Yeah, that’s probably a good idea.”
— Pulp Fiction
It’s August, which means it’s officially the time of year to celebrate (hey, it’s my birthday!)—though it’s also the time of year for me to turn the great frozen donkey wheel we keep in the dark room (Lost, anyone?) and officially hand over the reigns to The Other Press to the next editor in chief. A few people have asked me if I’m sad to leave this basement ghetto that I’ve called home for the last three years; the honest answer is no. Not because I didn’t learn almost everything I know about writing, editing, management, and social politics here, and not because I didn’t meet some of my best friends and worst enemies here. I’m not sad to leave because I couldn’t think of a better time to go, or a better cast of characters to leave The Other Press with.
I vividly remember my first Other Press collective meeting: I was so nervous. I had spent months quietly psyching myself up to go to a meeting, and then bailing at the last minute for fear of ridicule. Unfortunately, this strategy wasn’t getting me very far in my quest to become a professional writer, so I eventually allowed my good friend Jenn Markham to drag my anxious ass down to room 1020. I immediately knew I was home. Sure, it still took me weeks to actually write anything, but there was something about being—for the first time in my life—surrounded by people that wanted to write. This was also the day that I met Jacey Gibb. He was wearing signature plaid, had very little facial hair, and he smiled at me in a way that I’ve since come to realize means, “Well, this is weird. But we’re in this together.”
Starting in September, Jacey will be the editor in chief of The Other Press. He’s smart, he’s sassy, he’s opinionated, and he’s going to make this paper so damn good you’d pay hard-earned money for an issue (though, I mean, I doubt he will actually charge you for it). Jacey is an excellent editor, and I’m happy to also consider him a lifelong friend. You are in good hands, readers.
As for me, it’s probably time to do what you’re all hoping to do after college: that is, not spend half my time hanging out at the college. Armed with the arsenal of knowledge, wisdom, and YouTube Comedy Classics I’ve collected at the OP, I will be continuing my work as a freelance writer and editor. Three years ago, I literally threw up at the thought of showing anyone my work; starting today, I can proudly say that I make 100 per cent of my living writing (and now only throw up on really stressful days).
If this is the first issue of The Other Press you’ve ever read, then this rant is probably a bit confusing for you. However, I’d still like to encourage you to go to an Other Press meeting in the fall. I don’t want to hyperbolize, but you never know: it might just fundamentally change your life for the better. On the other hand, if you’ve been reading The Other Press for a while, I want to thank you. I hope you’ve enjoyed what we’ve done.
Now, it’s time for me to get the fuck out of here.