Wax On, Wax Off

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One of the biggest issues I’ve had in learning new technology is that it scares the hell out of me. When I started blogging three years ago (on blogspot), I was completely a novice when it came to messing with the coding. I think I probably crashed the site about a dozen times, in all honesty. However I knew even then changes were coming in regards to distribution of news.

I’m still sweating bullets when it comes to upgrading my new account or changing a theme. I’m always wondering “what if I screw it up?”

The good side to this is I’m learning, through the guidance of others, what to do and what not to do. I still have a lot to learn (curses FTP when it comes to her site.)

I have to remember that when I started in print news, we used a was machine and measured the inches with our handy dandy Xacto knives to make sure the newsprint lined up during paste-up.

Blast from the past:


We don’t need these machines now although I’m quite nostalgic about them. In the past five years, even in the small market I work in, Adobe programs, Quark and InDesign are standard. I still see the waxcoater covered in dust in the attic of where I currently work.

This may give some insight on why for some of us in deadwood, looking ahead is quite daunting.

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  1. Dan said December 31, 2008 | Permalink

    My second newspaper job (the first one with a regular paycheck) was pasteup clerk to The Chapel Hill Newspaper. I loved the waxing and the exacto knives and the way that a pasteup monkey with a good eye could quickly become a valued member of a team.

    But when the typesetting machine failed, and the newspaper had no way to get copy printed for me to wax and they were about to cancel the weekend paper, I came up with a way to route all the text through a 600-baud modem to the one Apple we had in the art department (a closet), where I used Aldus Pagemaker to output every single story and headline and cutline, etc.

    I’ve always liked both sides of the digital/analog coin, and the secret is to not be scared of the new stuff. Why NOT be curious about it? Isn’t journalism supposed to be curiosity in action? Isn’t humanity the toolmaking species? Isn’t technology just evolution by non-biological means? So why WOULDN’T a journalist want to embrace all this wild wonderful STUFF?

    Consequently: LOVE YOUR NEW SITE.

  2. Linzi said March 12, 2009 | Permalink

    A cheeky request but is there a chance your company would consider selling the dusty waxer ? Trying to set up a tiny publishing company and desperately need it to make old fashioned mock-ups. Pretty please !


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