I am in the process of negotiating with the Tracy Press to take over sole ownership of Inside Out, both in print and online. My work in the field of bariatrics and as the writer of this column/blog has begun to overshadow my actual full-time job as managing editor of the Tracy Press in the eyes of some.
What the general public has not realized is that I have never been paid by the Press for my work on Inside Out. I write all postings and attend all bariatric- and obesity-related events on my own time, either using paid or unpaid time off, depending on the situation. This has worked just fine for the last 2.5 years. However, demands on my time have increased exponentially this year, leading me to request more time off work and leading the public to think that Inside Out is my full-time job.
The Tracy Press and I have agreed that it would be best for everyone involved if I were to formally make Inside Out a personal endeavor. This is exciting news for me, because it means from this point on, I truly own my own words. Even with free columnists, the Press assumes the rights over everything it prints. It also means I get more freedom over my postings. The Press has never told me what I can and cannot write, but since I know that many readers consider this blog the property of the Press, I have stayed away from certain topics.
The only downside to this arrangement is that I no longer get media clearance into events as a representative of the Tracy Press. If an organization extends media credentials to bloggers and freelance writers, I will be able to obtain press passes under that umbrella but I can no longer use the Tracy Press' name or resources to gain entrance. Truthfully, though, I don't foresee that being a problem. It's not a privilege I took advantage of much anyway.
To better facilitate this division, I have created a consulting company with a business associate for my work in the field of bariatrics. We call our company Bariatric Network Associates, and we specialize in the education and support of those interested in surgical weight loss and the medical professionals who serve them.
We have our first Introduction to Weight Loss Surgery seminar tomorrow (Monday, July 30) at Sutter Tracy Community Hospital. Thanks to the generosity of the hospital, we are able to offer the seminar at no charge but we do request that those interested let us know they will attend ahead of time. The company's contact information is on the Web site.