MERCER: Goodbye, and see you soon

North State Journal is North Carolina's only statewide newspaper.

I’ve never been good at goodbyes.

You know that feeling when you talk to someone, say goodbye, then you’re unexpectedly walking in the same direction? I felt a bit of that as I sat down in my office to write this column.

I’m leaving North State Journal at the end of this month. I’m not going far, but my time here has filled me with memories to last a lifetime.

I can still remember how nervous I was the first time I walked into the newsroom.

The newspapers that lined walls, seeing and feeling the ink, the paper, and the how words and photos come together on a page.

“Am I going to be good at this?” I would ask myself.

I hope you’ve enjoyed the fruits of my, and more importantly, the talented staff’s labor.

The physical newspaper, we often hear, is dying. A relic of earlier centuries, we have laptops and tablets and phones that give us news in an instant. I didn’t believe it was true then and I don’t believe it’s true now.

The difference is producing something people want to read.

Each week, I did my best to put that into practice.

I valued the feedback, good and bad, I received. Weeks turned into months, and months turned into four years. I can say with conviction it doesn’t feel like it’s been that long.

Professionally, I led this team to produce over 200 issues of North State Journal, along with now seven distinct local editions. Nearly 100 total pages of content per week, every week. The statewide newspaper that started in 2016 is doing pretty great, wouldn’t you say?

I’ve also interviewed a president, questioned a governor, and met hundreds of people I never would have otherwise. The N.C. Press Assocation awards made nice additions to my office décor.

Most importantly, many of my co-workers have become friends I can talk to about any subject at any time.

Leaving North State Journal is hard because it’s given me so much. Yet we all know when we’re ready to do something new and that time has come for me. The conversation with North State Journal’s publisher, Neal Robbins, was not an easy one but I’m so grateful he understood and was encouraging.

As I look back at the last four years, this has been the best job I could have ever asked for.

To everyone reading this, thank you for believing in what North State Journal stands for and voting with your wallet to help us elevate the conversation.

About Matt Mercer 472 Articles
Matt Mercer is the editor in chief of North State Journal and can be reached at [email protected].