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Tuesday, April 30, 2013

The Valley Ripple…Teetering on Syndication?…

The NexusThe other day I found a small bundle of newspapers on the front porch and discovered we have a new paperboy…news to me because we don’t  subscribe to a newspaper. This is how it all came about. Last December just before Christmas we answered a knock at the door and opened to Brett and Megan de Vries bearing a thoughtful plate of high caloric Christmas greetings. After the exchange of season’s best wishes, in the brief conversation that followed, Brett asked me if  The Ripple might consider contributing to the Nexus, the Snohomish County Conservation District’s quarterly newsletter. I’ll not swear to it, but I think Brett’s invitation had much to do with the professional and thorough coverage The Ripple gave to the Valley’s first annual (and to date, the only) Pasture Bowl back on New Year’s Day, 2012,  at Tualco Field (“Are you Ready for Some Football…From The Ripple’s Sports Page, 1/3/12 ”). “If you think The Ripple’s musings and digressions might be of interest to your readers,” I replied, knowing full well The Ripple’s tendency to wander down wordy back roads, “I would be glad to contribute a post or two,” and that’s where we left it.

On 13 February I received a follow-up email from Mr. de Vries, reminding me of our earlier conversation. In my response I told him I was still interested in doing some writing for the Nexus but wondered if perhaps the two styles and journalistic missions might be incompatible. I had scanned the articles in a couple back editions and their format appeared to be purely straightforward and informational. Brett said he realized that but thought The Ripple’s style might add more of a personal, lighter touch, complementing the newsletter’s “straight news.”

Lois Ruskell of the Snohomish Conservation District sent me an inquiry on the subject: would I consider contributing to the Nexus? I shared with Lois the same concerns I shared with Brett and asked her if she’d read any of The Ripple’s material to see if  the posts might be a suitable fit for the Nexus. “You know”--my response by email-- “The Ripple takes a whimsical slant on the news.” Her reply: “We love ‘whimsical!’” “If you feel comfortable with that,” I tell Lois, “you have The Ripple’s permission to subject your readers to as much whimsy as you feel they can tolerate,” Well ahead of the newsletter’s March fifteenth deadline, I posted “Grounds for Your Garden…Giving Back to the Soil,”3/6/2013. A few days later Lois emailed a request for two or three images from the post and these I supplied.

That’s the story behind the stack of newsletters on my front porch: several copies of the Spring, 2013, edition of the Nexus. I thumbed through a copy and on page six I found, following a polite introduction to The Ripple and its editor, the “ground breaking” Grounds for Your Garden post. Not just on page six, either, but ALL of page six. The post appeared to be reprinted verbatim from The Ripple’s pages,which because of their penchant for the verbose, explains the one entire page of copy. The whimsy? As far as I could tell, all of it survived.The Ripple's page

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