Publish: to prepare and issue (printed material) for public distribution, to bring to public attention.
Perish: to die, esp. in an untimely manner; to pass from existence.
I’ve had friends in academia who viewed this dictum as a death threat that hung over their heads until finally they had published enough to gain tenure. My own view was that a professor’s job was to TEACH students – and that tenure should be based primarily on that ability. (Silly me – it’s actually about the university bolstering its reputation and getting grant money for research.)
I’m not an academic; I’m a writer, and for writers publishing is what rewards us for a lot of dreary production work. I can write something and print it out in hard copy, but I don’t feel the pleasure until it’s transformed by some outside entity into a published work for the world to see.
I’ve had lots of stuff published over the years, even had a piece of mine picked up by Reader’s Digest. (I looked down my patrician nose at RD until I discovered that compared to other magazines, they paid three times as much money for half as many words… Shut my mouth.)
To keep myself from mentally perishing, I need to know that my work will eventually be seen by someone besides me. Which is why I so love blogging on WordPress.
I write my post, I press the SAVE button, preview and correct the post, then press PUBLISH!
Et voilà, I’m out there, and you can see it. No middle man.
No money either…. but money wasn’t my objective. Although money would be good.
Hmm. I could charge for pushing P products: poodles, peonies, peanuts, pajamas, paint, pearls, pigs…