6.03.2004

Back in the saddle, again!
or 2 Epiphanies in 2 Weeks
It is remarkable how long it takes for me to learn things. Or it is depressing, if you are involved with me on a daily basis. Either way, I've discovered that it takes about two years for me to become truly comfortable in a new town, or with new friends, or in a new job.

That means I'm still at least 18 months away from being a marginally decent small press publisher. For instance, all the way up until yesterday, I was desperately looking for the right talent to take on tasks I had in mind. But that afternoon I had the very simple realization that I should be working just as hard to find the right task for the talent at hand.

See, every one is really good at something. But instead of trying to make them fit the job, a better solution is to make the job fit them.

Before this week I was locked into the first equation, the thinking typically used by larger companies. Sure, if you have a budget made of more than lemon rinds and pizza crusts you can afford to hire talent for the job (ala Wizards hiring Gentry and Kam). But if you are small like PCP, it makes much more sense to examine the talent you have on hand, find what they do best, and then do it.

I know, I know, it seems simple, but seen through the lens of my life, it is a powerful realization.

Fortunately, my hunger for good work outweighs my pride in any decisions I've made. That alone is half the battle.

And the second epiphany? It came during a conversation at 4:am in Colorado (6:am EST ... ouch), and went something like this:

MNTS: Hey, Silver, go over my story while Grims and I discuss "In the Tomb of the Goblin Queen."

- 30 minutes pass -

SILVER: You need changes here, here and here.

MNTS: (nodding) Wow. He's a lot better at this than you are, Grimbones.

GRIMBONES: (drooling from lack of sleep, blurts out defensively) Of course he is! I'm a terrible editor, damnit! My job is to find people who do things better than I can. I'm a producer.

Exactly. My job is to find people who can do things better than I can.

Then I'm supposed to herd them all into the same box canyon and run them off the cliff.

I mean that in the best possible way. ;)

By the way, PCP took on Silver as final draft line editor on the spot, and I finally got the right kind of art request to one of our many exceptional artists.

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