Writer's Market 2009 is now available in my local bookstore, and I probably won't buy it. I've been a loyal purchaser of this annual for round-about 30 years, but the publishing world has changed and so have I. I didn't purchase the 2008 edition and didn't miss it.
I can remember the days when I covered each annual with Post-It Notes and yellow highlighter marks. Alas, the 2007 edition remains on the shelf next to my desk without a single crack in the spine, reminding me why I didn't bother purchasing the 2008 edition and why I won't purchase the 2009 edition.
There was a time when Writer's Market was my lifeline to publishing, where I learned about markets I had no other access to, and where I constantly trolled for editorial guidelines, editors' names, and editorial addresses. Many times in the past I've sold manuscripts to magazines I had never seen, based solely on information in Writer's Market.
All of that information is now available on the Internet. Between on-line market reports and frequent use of search engines, I can do everything I once did with my annual copy of Writer's Market.
Even though I no longer need my annual Writer's Market, I do remember it fondly and know that my career might not have progressed the way it has without it.
Farewell, old friend.