Adventures on rocky roads and memory lanes
The good news is that Dirck Halstead’s The Digital Journalist is still up and running, having received a good sum of cash through donations. Long may this continue!
The bad news is that National Geographic Adventure magazine is folding. When Caroline Hirsch, the Deputy Photo Editor, mailed me the news yesterday, my heart sank. No, I can’t say I was totally surprised. But saddened certainly. I felt like that child who, long suspecting that the tooth fairy and Santa Claus don’t exist, has this finally and irrefutably confirmed. (What, the Easter Bunny too?)
My heart and soul used to be in the adventure world. I gave my all to that community and then, eight years ago, teetering on the brink of burnout, I too closed an adventure magazine. As the Editor-in-Chief of Out There, I had done my damnedest for that community, had fought the odds to keep the magazine alive, fly the flag on behalf of my heroes and heroines, but the money-hungry media company that owned us just wanted more and more profit. It was the best of times and the worst of times. So we closed down the monthly publication and instigated a far more sustainable model of stand-alone annuals. They continue to this day and the brand limps along. (Well done, Fiona McIntosh, for pulling it off on a shoestring.)
Now I wave farewell to that old figure of inspiration. I guess it’s that the public is saying we simply already have too much adventure in our lives. Adventure sport and travel is so Last Millennium. Back then, when the economy and our careers were such a sure thing, we needed to dash off on exciting adventures. Now that the daily grind has become the hourly rollercoaster, we’re looking for peace and quiet. Too much adventure already!