Every now and then I take the time to search for myself online. This may sound like a bit of an ego trip, and while I am loathe to admit that I actually have an ego, it really isn't really about my ego. It's about marketing. Checking myself online is more like taking the temperature of my writing, finding out how hot I am on line. Can people find my work easily? Do I need to add tags to something I want to have be more accessible? What can I do to boost sales?
Sometimes I find something surprising. For many years if you googled "Laurie Kay Olson" the first item that would come up was a pregnancy and childbirth website. It was a strange connection for an old, childless spinster. The website had selected to quote me from one of the columns I wrote for the Colorado Daily newspaper back in 1997. It was a humorous observation of why men felt pressured to invent the epidural. In the past few weeks, this entry has disappeared.
There was a time when your work as a journalist lasted about a day, just until the next edition was on the street and the old one was lining the bottom of a birdcage or was put down for the dog to make his editorial comments. Now, with the advent of the Internet, writing has a much longer shelf-life. So, on a whim I added Colorado Daily after my name and found a few interesting items from the long past.
1. Yesterday's Junk Becomes Tomorrow's Office Building
2. The review of the book The Soul Unearthed on the publisher's site
3. One of my columns re-posted by a fan - Look What I Writ for International Literacy Day
So my past journalistic endeavors have not completely disappeared into the morgue at the Colorado Daily, bound up in some dusty volume, or, more likely, on a forgotten roll of microfilm.
There is an old Hungarian folk tale that says that when you die, if you have created something that outlives you, you go on to live in a special place for as long as your work is still around. I've always liked that story. I'd like to think that all of us who write would have a long and healthy life in that place. Words can be eternal.
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