IM: Tips For "Media," "Media" Being Broadly Interpreted

I engage in regular encounters with "media," by which I mean people who want to pick my brain. Some want to talk beer. Some want to talk meat. Some just want to talk.

From their point of view, my brain is (apparently) the equivalent of a free book at a free library: their's for the picking, whenever they want and at no cost to them.

From my point of view, however, my brain is attached to a body and that body is, at any given moment, engaged in all manner of activity: Fixing dinner, buying groceries, reading a 600-page book about 21st-century capitalism written by a French economist, writing an essay about the shortcomings of the food reform movement, catching up on recorded episodes of "Walking Dead," rolling around in bed with the body attached to The Husband's brain. Etc.

You get the picture: I've got a life. And like the life of everyone else on Planet Earth, mine exists within the constraints of a 24-hour day. And since I've not yet figured out how to go without sleep, part of each 24-hour cycle is devoted to sleep. Ditto food.

Translation: I'm as busy as everyone else. Others may view the activities that constitute my "busy" as trivial or irrelevant, but that's their problem, not mine.

So. Back to media folk: New Rule:

If you want to pick my brain, be precise about what you have in mind. If you're picking my brain for the purposes of a four-hour television program you hope to pitch to a network, TELL ME THAT. Why? So I can decide if I want to spend two hours of my time educating you about Topic X so that you can eventually profit (as in $$$) from what you learn.

If you want to interview me about Topic A for your radio program, your podcast, or an article you're writing:

  • schedule a specific time
  • tell me precisely how long you need me
  • don't keep me waiting
  • don't expect me to spend more than the allotted time

If you want me to be a guest co-host on your program, tell me that in advance, and tell me how long you expect to need me. When the scheduled time arrives, STICK TO THE SCHEDULE.

Why so many rules? See above: I'm as busy as you and I believe that my "busyness" is as valuable as yours. Thanks for your cooperation.

Today's random photo.