Tina Brown Shapes The Next Ten Years

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 Ten years ago this month, my wife and I left our youngest son with Grandma at home in El Paso, Texas and we flew to Manhattan to attend the party to inaugurate TALK magazine. I'd agreed to be one of the writers for Tina Brown's new magazine--I'd previously written for her at the New Yorker.

Ferries ran the 1000 or so invitees over to the Statue of Liberty--the island off the island. I felt as if I were in a dream, walking around in the dusk, brushing past the likes of Salman Rushdie and Madonna. Sylvia ran into a chatty Dr. Ruth in the restroom and then it seemed we kept running into Dr. Ruth --she was everywhere on the island just as she seemed to always be on TV those days.

The New York Times reports today on the ten year anniversary of that party, but titles it "An Omen No One Saw" and how we were all "unaware of the sharks circling". 

I don't think that's a fair assessment.  Looking across and seeing the twin towers standing, could anyone have predicted how the world would change? Or how magazines would fare over the next decade?

Here is how I see that surreal event: as an example of Tina's daring and inventiveness. I've pointed to her career when advising students and others. I say, be bold, be creative, reinvent yourself and dare to reshape the world around you, and most of all be willing to risk failure. Tina's latest venture, The Daily Beast, is like nothing else out there, and she brings to it all her skills in media, in recruiting new talent. But what it does best of all is showcase her own writing--in all the talk about Tina Brown, people don't always appreciate the brilliant writer behind the brilliant organizer.

So Tina, thanks for the memory of a hell of a party. I'm sitting here this morning, looking out of the window and drinking coffee. I am wondering what else is cooking in the mind of Tina Brown. It is commute time here in California, but near noon in Manhattan. She's already ahead of us.

(Photo credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/patrioux/145381211)

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Abraham Verghese is an author, physician and med school professor. He is the author of Cutting for Stone and his writing has appeared in many major publications. More

Abraham Verghese is a physician and writer. His third book and first novel, Cutting for Stone, was published by Knopf in 2009. He is also known for two acclaimed non-fiction works, My Own Country, which was based on his experiences working with persons living with HIV in Johnson City, Tennessee; that book was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle award and was made into a movie. He followed that with The Tennis Partner, also a New York Times notable book and a national bestseller. His writing has appeared in The Atlantic, The New Yorker, The New York Times , The New York Times Magazine, Sports Illustrated, and The Wall Street Journal as well as many medical journals. Verghese is board-certified in internal medicine, pulmonary medicine and infectious diseases. He attended the Iowa Writers Workshop at the University of Iowa where he earned his MFA. He currently practices and teaches at Stanford University School of Medicine where he is a tenured Professor and Senior Associate Chair for the Theory and Practice of Medicine in the Department of Internal Medicine.
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