On the way to the meeting (a nice 35 minute drive), I was listening to NPR. British commandos rescued a reporter for the New York Times, Stephen Farrell. Farrell's Afghan interpreter (a fellow reporter), Sultan M. Munadi, was killed in the raid. The NPR piece told a little about Mr. Munadi...he was 34 (I'm 34), father of two (I have two kids), interested in public education in Afghanistan (I'm a public school teacher)...
Too often we overlook those who die in war zones. Casualties become numbers. Numbers are easier to ignore than the deaths of real human beings. My heart goes out Mr. Munadi's family...and all those touched by war. If you do nothing else, read this Times piece and remember a brave man who was driven by a quest for truth.
At the rules meeting, we discussed appropriate sources from which students may take "cuttings" for prose/poetry interpretation. (What is oral interpretation?) As it now stands, the official governing body for our activity does not recognize online sources. Basically, if it isn't published on paper, it doesn't count.
Most of those who read this blog write. Most writers know the abundance of high quality online venues for fiction. (um, Clarkesworld, Fantasy, Strange Horizons, Chizine...just to name a few in the realm of spec-fic) More and more "content" is only being published in digital form. With resources like Lulu.com and Blurb.com, dead tree publishing isn't really a gateway to "quality" anymore.
While I appreciate the original aim of the rule, I believe it has become outdated. Paper is more or less meaningless. (yeah, it has great sentimental value to me as a writer, but we're moving into an increasingly digital society) I'm writing my state activities association representative this morning to explain why.
Another interesting chapter in the online v. print debate from a different perspective...