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Ken Magill's back, and he's got a story to tell: His own


From 1997-2016, Ken Magill covered the wild and woolly happenings of online marketing (and email marketing) from its nearly nascent beginnings through to the world-changing behemoth it would become. From DM News, to Magilla Marketing, to the Magill Report, Ken worked hard to provide "the real stories behind the PR nonsense," keeping us updated on online and email marketing industry changes, and calling bullshit as appropriate, as "Marketing's Weekly Dose of the Truth." In October 2023, he published his memoir: There, He's Crying.

There, He's Crying: A Memoir, by Ken Magill [ Buy now: Amazon | Bookshop ]

Ken Magill is quick to let me know that he grew up in a different time. Out with the other kids all day long, shooting crabapples at each other, mom has no idea where you are, you're out on your own with your friends, fending for yourselves, and everything's just fine. He compares that with his life today, and his child's life, and how the world has changed and all the challenges associated with modern life -- and his child's challenges, and he explains that ultimately, that's why he dropped out of the email scene. I point out that it's been just over ten years since I linked to a Ken Magill article from here on Spam Resource  -- and looking now, I see that the Magill Report ran up through April of 2016. He then dropped everything -- taking care of his child became more important to him than writing about direct marketing. Though I'm a little sad that we've lost the chance to hear his thoughts on where online marketing was along the way and where it is today -- and his calling out boneheads doing boneheaded things, whether they be spam fighters, direct marketers, or scammers -- I can absolutely understand that life gets in the way.

In Ken's memoir, he talks about where he came from -- sharing anecdotes about both his family and his wife's family, with broken homes and tough parenting, his time in the armed forces and after, and how he ended up working in direct marketing, which led him to writing for DMNews, which led him to cover the burgeoning internet marketing scene in the late 1990s and onward.

Sometimes the act of writing the book changes your life. In this case, Ken's using a tool already at his disposal -- his ability to write -- to journal his life-changing journey, to share it with others, and to help others. He hopes that folks going through some of the same stuff he and his family have gone through will benefit from knowing that they're not alone.

Not to spoil too much of it, but the book contains a fair amount of drugs (and a very significant rabbit turd), along with some of Ken's favorite columns, and, as Ken himself puts it, a good number of “seemingly unrelated anecdotes that I find entertaining.” Enjoy.

[ Buy There, He's Crying: A Memoir, by Ken Magill now: Amazon | Bookshop ]

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