Thursday, January 17, 2013


A little bit about what's going on, in both the macro and micro senses:

I started this with the intention of doing something different from the big mainstream car sites. A place like Jalopnik or TTAC or Autoblog has a specific mission and mentality and structure; they usually go for straightforward high-impact articles posted up as quickly as possible. That's a major part of the auto-journalism infrastructure, and Jalopnik is as good at it as anyone, especially under Matt's direction. Working with him was an education in the best sense, and a lot of what I learned there will carry over to here.

But the four-paragraph structures and sprint deadlines definitely favor some styles and considerations over others. If you read my old stuff, it often looks like a thesaurus pileup; I was trying to cram a lot of thought and impression into a tiny space, which usually didn't work so well. That was just a symptom of some other underlying things I want to deal with here.

I want SoM to be something that allows for a bit more development and thought about the often complex ideas and realities that run through the motor industry. Part of it is going to be my own little soapbox where I can rail against the boring and stupid; part of it is going to be attempts at serious analysis and critical consideration.

A good analysis isn't going to just write itself. The pieces I want to do for this are going to usually take time to write and arrange and edit. This is not going to be updated every half hour; instead of an automotive CNN, I want this to be more of a Harper's or New Yorker. So instead of a few quips a day count on a sizable article or two or so per week, hopefully with a good bit of depth and intellectual content in each. Yes, there will be smaller notes and observations, but mostly this is in pursuit of something bigger.

So that's what I'm in the middle of right now, working on a first real magnum opus that will take a few good days to fit together and shape to my satisfaction. That's why it's been a bit quiet lately, and that's why this isn't going to be something that needs to be F5'd every fifteen minutes. But I do want this to be saying things worth saying, and hopefully it'll be saying it to a lot of people, hopefully including some important ones, soon.

Cars and motorcycles and the like exist in a complicated world. They deserve serious consideration. And they'll get it.

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