The common saying goes that the pen is mightier than the sword. That's a load of horse crap.
Take one quick scan through my mailbox and you'll witness the mass of car and driving enthusiasts who come knocking at our door for a job. I guarantee that their passion is so true, they'll jump on a sharpened blade at the drop of a hat. The pen, unfortunately, is not the most common seppuku tool.
These are gentlemen, and the occasional lady, who live and die by gasoline. They're undoubtedly driver, mechanic, researcher, scientist and poor bastard all rolled into one. We do our best at Sport Compact Car to find wickedly fast machinery, test it down to the atom, find out what works and what doesn't, figure out how to go faster, and, most importantly, bring you into our world like you were standing next to us. Apparently, it has rung true with quite a few of our readers.
From across the country, I find individuals willing to move home, eat from a can, live out of a box and brave those mild, sunny California days in order to get on board at SCC. Some want to write, some want to drive and some want to fulfill their college internships testing GT-Rs instead of getting coffee for Lumbergh. It's the enthusiasm and passion of all our readers that keeps us hunting for choice data deep into the night, and I welcome them to keep hunting for their dream-no matter where or what that may be. And, to answer the most popular question, here's how we all got started in publishing:
Joey Leh, Editor. Back in college, I wrote the most absurd, eye-catching letter I could to garner the attention of the magazine I subscribed to: Sport Compact Car. There were no openings, but I sent subsequent letters to enough magazines that I got my foot in the door as a freelancer. After graduating as a computer engineer (a fact that Jay counts as being half a true engineer), I decided to forgo a real salary and instead went for what was most interesting. After paying my dues as a staff editor at other enthusiast mags, I ended up at SCC, undoubtedly thanks to a healthy selection of bribes and murders. Well, maybe not that last part.
Jay Chen, Engineering Editor. Jay went to the same college as me, the University of California, Irvine, but he came out as a mechanical engineer. After earning his masters degrees, Jay ventured into the real world, where he ended up at such places as Neuspeed and an overseas firm which did OE emissions/driveability ECU tuning. After hearing from a friend about a position within the publishing world, Jay handled tech at a Euro-snob magazine before coming to SCC. Our radar gun hasn't been the same since.
Andy Hope, Senior Editor. Andy, in an interesting twist, started out as a racer and then turned to journalism, instead of trying to weasel his way into racecars like the rest of us. And like many racers, he started the old-fashioned way: racing grandmas for pink slips. After giving up his drag ways, Andy got bit by the road racing bug and never looked back. He has won championships in NASA and TCRA, competed for companies such as HKS USA, Endless USA and Hasport, then segued from test driver to freelance writer to staff editor. Oddly enough for a driver, he can write too. Go figure.
So, as you can see, we're all car guys and performance freaks, but none of us are hardcore journalists knocking on Newsweek's door. So if testing fast cars, building projects, driving like you mean it and pouring your heart and soul into a magazine for a few magic beans sounds like fun, then by all means keep sending us your letters. Welcome to the club.