Back in the early nineties, I published a mini-magazine called the Seasoned Citizens Gazette: The Journal for the Not-Quite-Over-the-Hill-Gang. Because I lived in the Pikes Peak area, I invited seniors from Colorado Springs and surrounding towns to submit short stories, articles, poems, columns, etc. I, too, wrote pieces that were aimed at the AARP squad. My magazine was distributed free in senior communities and centers, pharmacies, and other places seniors frequented; it also could be subscribed to and mailed monthly (not for free) to private homes. Ads covered the printing. Beyond that, it was primarily a labor of love, as well as a fun way to keep my mind both occupied and creatively directed and provide an outlet for fellow seasoned citizens who had something to share.
|by Verbaska on MorgueFile|
What is a “seasoned citizen”? We have seen many seasons come and go; we can be spicy, tart, peppery, or sweet; we have weathered life’s storms and are still in there punching; we are survivors, persons for all seasons. It’s a mindset.
The Seasoned Citizens Gazette focused on ways to help ourselves, do for ourselves, share of ourselves. For the most part, we are still vital, healthy, life-loving folks. We are not a throw-away generation; in fact, we have more to offer in the way of wisdom and experience than any other group of people living today.
|by Mockingbird on MorgueFile|
What does this have to do with writing? Perhaps a lot. When I was publishing the Seasoned Citizens Gazette, I distributed hard copy by hand—after writing, editing, doing layout, paying printing costs, and buying gasoline to deliver the finished product. Today, it could be circulated worldwide on the Internet with little to no out-of-pocket costs. Advertising could still be an income source, and the yearly price of subscribing to the journal could be affordable for almost any budget. We could distribute nationally or even internationally, reaching an audience far wider than I could ever have done back in the day. We could advertise our books and/or our editing services in addition to publishing our own pearls of wisdom, as well as the gems contributed by others. We could encourage our contemporaries to get out of their rocking chairs, so to speak. We could launch a blog as Dani has done so capably here at Blood Red Pencil. We could build businesses based on our knowledge or learn to build websites to help others expand their businesses. All this requires written communication, aka writing. The pen is still mighty, and we can wield it with the proficiency of many years' experience.
Are you a senior citizen or a seasoned citizen? Or, if you’re still a young thing, which do you plan to be when you qualify for AARP?
|Linda Lane and her editing team mentor and encourage writers at all phases of the writing process. To learn more about what they do, please visit them at www.denvereditor.com.|