300,000 words, some of them quite good

I’m sure this is of no interest to anyone but me, but I’m celebrating an anniversary of sorts: my first ever bit of published writing was for .net magazine back in issue 51, and I’ve just finished a feature for issue 151. That’s eight years, 100 issues (give or take a few) and – a conservative estimate, this – 300,000 words. Blimey.

That first feature was about blogging, or journalling as it was called back then:

More and more people are doing it: in 1996 there were around 20 online diaries. In 1998, the Open Pages site alone links to almost 500. Very few of these people are famous, and only a small number are dead.

Ah, the good old days. 35 million Internet users and an incredible 500 online diaries.

It wasn’t just my first feature, though – it was also my first cock-up. Mocking a blood-soaked “woo, look at me, I’m so mad” site, I suggested that the owner wasn’t mad at all. Turns out she was, as her pissed-off partner emailed the mag to point out. Oops.

On a brighter note, I did get to claim in print that the Hitler diaries were written by a small dog.