I am a shittee editar
I am not a very good editor. I will be the first to admit that. Let’s just say that there is a very good reason that I am currently in my twentieth year of writing about popular culture professionally, after 16 years with The A.V Club and two at Pitchfork’s film site The Dissolve, and two years freelance, and the only time I’ve ever been an editor has been during the two and half months of Nathan Rabin’s Happy Place. I did not set out to be an editor. That has never been my intention. Heck, if you were to ask me four months ago if I wanted to be an editor my answer would have been an unequivocal, “Oh hell no!”
Yet for months I’ve served as Nathan Rabin’s Happy Place’s Editor-in-Chief for a couple of reasons. Probably most importantly, I can’t afford to pay anybody to do the job. Secondly, I doubt anyone in their right mind would want the gig. Some readers, mortified by the amateur shit show that is my spelling and grammar, have kindly volunteered their services copy-editing, and while that is a nice thing to offer to do, and something I may eventually take them up on, the fact of the matter is that I just write too goddamned fast and too goddamned much, and am entirely too much of a one-man band to make outside copy-editing palatable.
The great appeal of running my own website is that I can dream up, create and release writing at a rapid clip and be constrained only by the limits of my energies and imagination. The downside to doing everything myself (with the occasional assist from my preternaturally talented and capable sister-in-law, who built this site with the help of Squarespace) is that the site is, and will probably always remain, a little rough around the edges, a little homemade, a little sloppy even. And while I never set out to make errors I think a lack of polish and professionalism can actually be a good thing. I don’t think it’s possible to read this site extensively and doubt that it represents the uncompromising vision of one weird old dude. I like to live in an imaginary fantasy land where that maters.
This site represents my creative voice in its purest form, even more so than my slam poetry and intensely personal and poorly received Off-Broadway one-man show, Papa, Where Is The Brisket For Shabbos? (so apparently blackface is forbidden now, wish I’d gotten the memo before opening night!) so of course it’s going to be a little messy, and ragged, and raw, and Juggalotastic.
One of the great things about being editor, staff writer and staff of a website is that I know how insecure and desperate for validation my writer is, so I constantly shower him with praise and validation. I’ve even nicknamed him “Scoop” despite the fact that, honestly, one of my distinguishing features as a writer at this point is that I have not, will not, and pretty much can not, break anything resembling a scoop, unless it happens of the Gathering of the Juggalos. But I appreciate me calling myself “Scoop” in appreciation of my journalistic skills, and there’s absolutely nothing weird or pathetic about me spending entire hours hugging myself while crying softly or telling myself what an amazing job I’m doing.
Hungry for information about ongoing negotiations between the industry and the Writer’s Guild? Don’t look for it here! I barely even understand what those words mean and I’ve theoretically been working in the business for two decades. Nope, you’re never going to find scoops or timely news or any of the kind of things you’ll find on “popular” websites run by “professionals” who don’t "constantly advertise their lack of skills as if somehow proud of their many deficiencies as a writer and human being” here at Nathan Rabin’s Happy Place.
Nope, you’re going to read about a bunch of crazy shit only I’m theoretically interested in. In a pop culture world where voice is increasingly irrelevant, this site is nothing but my voice.
So as the editor-in-chief of Nathan Rabin’s Happy Place, you’re welcome.
As the editor of chief of Nathan Rabin’s Happy Place, I’d also, however, like to say that I’m sorry. For this, and for everything else.
Support independent media and Nathan Rabin’s Happy Place at https://www.patreon.com/nathanrabinshappyplace