Life after dead (trees & newspapers)

Greg Hernandez, Hollywood writer for the LA Daily News, gets laid off and in seven days he’s competing with his former employer online – using the brand equity said employer helped him build – in his own tinseltown blog, Greg in Hollywood. He tells the story of his launch here. Didn’t hurt that his friend Danny Sullivan is a leading expert in search engines – which apparently brings in enough value to afford him a guest house where Greg could stay while they built the site. He writes:

I was riding bikes with my friends along the boardwalk of the Balboa Peninsula last week and tried to remember the last time I felt so excited about the future. Then I realized exactly when: it was nearly 25 years earlier, the week I moved into the dorms at San Diego State University. Everything and anything seemed possible then and now it does again.

Except then, I had a lot more hair.

And he’s off and running. We’ll check back in in a few months to see how he’s doing with stamina and revenue. But it’s exciting to see a journalist excited about a new future.

Note well, other formerly employed journalists, that you don’t need friends in high places in the internet to build your own blog. You can go to WordPress or Typepad or Blogger and start writing and Google or GoDaddy to take your domain. My only advice is to specialize: take on a beat that isn’t being overcovered, do a lot of linking, rise up in Googlejuice, and make the turf your own.