The old saying "parting is such sweet sorrow" has never been more appropriate. After nearly 16 years of being involved in truck magazines, I am "retiring" to Arizona to start a new career in marketing. They say change is good, but sometimes it takes a while for reality to sink in. That's been the case with me since I tossed in the towel at Primedia, much to everyone's surprise. After all, I've been a fixture in the Truck Group for nearly 10 years. So what gives?
I've never been one to make drastic changes in my life without hours of agonizing over whether I'm doing the right thing and countless sleepless nights worrying myself to death. And this decision has been, by far, the toughest I've had to make. The fact of the matter is, I need to be closer to my family, and at this point in my career, I honestly need a change. So how do you close the book on a 20-year publishing career? It isn't easy. Publishing will always be in my blood, and you may even spot my byline in Primedia publications from time to time.
I've always loved to write. I even attempted to write a racing novel at the age of 10 about an American competing in the 24 Hours of LeMans. I still have that hand-written manuscript, which was scribbled out on tablet paper with a fountain pen. I did the high school paper thing and then went on to J-school at college. My first paper job was as a contributor to a weekly called the Western Racing News. What a great job that was: I went to car races for free, drank as much beer in the press box as I could, and got paid to write stories, and have them published, no less. From there, it was on to real newspapers and eventually to McMullen Publishing as a staffer on 4WD Action magazine. The rest, as they say, is history.
So what will I miss the most? The people. Contrary to the popular corporate mentality, magazines are not all about profit. They are about people. Granted, magazines do need to make money to stay in business, but the real connection that makes it all happen is the relationship that exists between the people who make the magazines and the people who read them. These relationships run deep and are often long-lasting.
And it's the people I work with that I will miss the most. First and foremost will be my staff, not only here at Sport Truck, but also on the other magazines I oversee, including Mini Truckin', OFF-ROAD, and 4 Wheel Drive & Sport Utility. I have also been fortunate enough to work with many other great people at Primedia; too many to list, actually. Then there are the friendships that have been formed over the years with business associates and other colleagues.
Last but not least, I will miss you, the readers. I have swapped stories and swilled beer with you at shows, taken pictures of your trucks, and watched your kids grow up over the years. You are the reason the magazines exist in the first place and the backbone of why they continue to grow and prosper. To all, I say, thanks for the memories. You all will be missed.