Sixteen Bits Online

OCTOBER 1996

Editor's Desk

Cliff Manley, Editor

What does an Editor do?

Well, a PAID Editor is a quality control expert, among many skills they would utilize. They generally make sure that the publication meets the standards they believe the customer wants and expects. That means many different things, not the least among them, changing articles to fit, suit and meet those exacting standards. It also means chucking out a number of articles that don’t qualify. This is a VERY brief description, they do many other things as well, like staying up late to meet deadlines.

Generally a VOLUNTEER Editor of a publica-tion such as Sixteen Bits will do much the same things a PAID Editor will do, but to a lesser ex-tent (apart from the late deadlines). We believe firmly that this magazine is owned and run by the PCUG, that means YOU.

We will sometimes change articles, however, being a published Journalist I understand how someone can get upset by the red pen. But, as a professional, I also understand that the words I have scripted may not fit what is needed. There may be a number of reasons for this, the most obvious being the Editor may consider the content not specific enough, i.e. the reader may not understand my point. There is a fine line between writing something interesting while keeping it on a level that the “lowest common denominator” will understand. Prime example, I’ll bet less than half of you understood that last comment. It is not meant to be derogatory, it is a commonly used (in publishing circles) statement that applies to the reader who is least likely to understand the article. The person who just bought their first PC, the learner motorcycle rider...

My goal as a writer is ALWAYS to make it interesting enough to catch the attention of the first time reader straight away. Then keep him/her reading it right to the end, even if they didn’t initially understand what the hell I was writing about. If I can do that, then that person may have learn’t something new that day...

My goal as an editor is to produce a maga-zine that appeals not only to us, the “propeller head” or “computer nerd” but also can be read, enjoyed and understood by the “newbee” to use the Web vernacular.

“Impossible!” You say. Maybe, but then again so is the perfect game of Golf, or the perfect Chess game. By the way, considered to be the hardest and second hardest games in the world. I know it may never happen in Sixteen Bits, but that is part and parcel of being a vol-unteer group. What’s that old saying about paying peanuts??? Never mind, we love the work we are doing, we may not get the time we would like to put into the Magazine (although I have spent around eight hours a day for the last three weeks on Sixteen Bits, much to my families disgust). Sometimes we feel that we don’t get the support we deserve, but it seems we both keep coming back for more.

So, the next time you consider writing an article for Sixteen Bits, remember, it WILL be edited, although only a bit, but the Editors love both the words and the paper they are written on. We have not only the Author, Committee, Editorial team and ourselves in mind, but we are attempting to create something that EVERYONE in the Group can call their own.

Having said that, let me state the reasons why I put so much work into the magazine, seemingly for no reward. I love the work. My editorial skills, particularly layout, are fairly good, and getting better(?). I’m currently unemployed and I am hoping this will help me get a job in a related field, be it as a Journalist, Editor, Sub-editor, copy boy, football mascot, door to door salesperson, garbage collector, systems manager, whatever... What I am trying to say is, if you like the work we are doing, or for that matter don’t like the work we are doing, then remember that work comes at a cost. Either way, let us have it with both barrels. We can take it, we’re tough, (although Darrell isn’t). E-mail us at pcug.editor@pcug.org.au we are big Bananas and don’t cry too much, at least not unless my better half beats me up when I am reading one of your nasties, so don’t e-mail us on Fridays, Mondays, Tuesda......

and by the way, got any good recipes?

The one down the bottom of the page was a favorite at the opening...send more...


Mars Bartm Slice

2 x 60g Mars Barstm
75g butter or margarine
1 tablespoon Golden Syrup
3 cups Rice Bubblestm
185g cooking chocolate, chopped
Place chopped Mars Bars, butter and golden syrup in large bowl. Melt in microwave on high 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in Rice Bubbles, press into greased lamington tin. Place chocolate in small bowl, melt on high 1˝ mins. Spread evenly over slice. Refrigerate until set.


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