May 22, 2003

Managing To Avoid Management This

Managing To Avoid Management

This morning we had our weekly editorial meeting for eServer Magazine. I usually don't say much during the meetings; I just give a quick update on where I'm at with the articles and other magazine content I'm working on, and I'll throw a snarky little one-liner in if something is spoken that amuses me. But, overall, I just sit there and let my publisher and managing editor discuss mundane things such as editorial calendars and IBM legal matters. It's fascinating in a "thank goodness I don't have to do that" sort of way.

When I first started as news editor for this magazine, there was only one magazine. In the year and a half since I joined the staff we've picked up three more publications without picking up additional staff. To say I have job security right now would be a major understatement, which is quite a relief in this trembling economy.

Well, anyway, our latest magazine addition needs a managing hand, and the forces that be briefly suggested that I take on that role. When that was mentioned in today's meeting, I was ready to shout "Noooooooooooooooooooo!" until all the air was out of my lungs and all you could hear was a choking gurgle. I don't want to manage, and I've never wanted to manage, ANYTHING. I'll write. And, I'll edit. But, I WILL NOT manage. I learned early on, way back in college, and probably even earlier than that, that my skills are that of a writer, not a manager. Take one look around my desk right now, and you'll agree that my organizational skills are not those of a manager-type person.

"I won't do it," I said, matter-of-factly, although my head was still screaming "Nooooooooooooo!"

My publisher looked at me with a cocked head, sort of like a quizzical doberman, but then he nodded and said, "Well, I told them (them being the publishing company I work for) that I didn't think you wanted to do that."

At that point my managing editor chimed in. I told her months ago that I never wanted to have managerial duties. "Ryan's explained his position on this to me before. I don't think he'd like this."

So, I get to stay in my happy writing capacity, and I'm so relieved right now, I think I'm going to pee.

Posted by Ryan at May 22, 2003 11:28 AM
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