Doing research for a new story which was inspired in part by some articles and studies on Generation X (born approximately between 1965-1980), Generation Y/the Millennials (born ~1981-1997), the Baby Boomers (born ~1946-1964), and Generation Jones—a sort of between generation wedged between late Boomers and early Xers containing folks born ~1954-1964 who share a lot of sociocultural traits with Gen X but who fall within the demographic of Boomers and who also share some cultural influences and hallmarks with them.
The perception is that bloggers and folks who read blogs tend to be Gen Yers/Millennials, “digital natives” who’ve had the benefits of and been around digital technology and the Internet for their whole lives. It made me curious to see where y’all fell.
So herein my completely unscientific poll:
I realized that I’ve dropped all my writing hamsters, and they’ve scampered to parts unknown. The only fiction I’ve completed this year is the story I started last year for Russian Winters, and I suspect the only reason I managed to wring “the end” out of it is because I had a deadline—which was extended three months, to boot. Session ended two months ago; I’ve wasted a lot of time when I should have been writing angsting about not writing. So I’m taking a leaf from my own book to remind myself that One Hamster is Still Juggling, and I’m starting up Club 100 for Writers again:
• 800 on new SF story, working title “NANI.” It’s been a while since I did science fiction; I was pretty exclusively focused on fantasy last year. It feels good to stretch my science-geek writerly muscles, although I’m chagrined at how weak and flabby they are. This story will be grounded in social and developmental psychology, which very much plays to my academic background, but I’m finding I have to look up some really basic stuff ’cause I can only remember shadowy concepts and vague theories, and I’m needing specifics. It’s a bit distressing to realize how much information I used to have readily available for speedy retrieval and how little remains accessible without some massive joggling. My brain needs a better indexing system.
• Fan mail from a couple Cricket readers (forwarded to me by the fabu folks of Carus Publishing) for “When Shakko Did Not Lie” and “The Tanuki-Kettle.”
The first, from a 10-year-old girl, said:
“I have been getting this magazine for two years. I think it is the best magazine ever!!!!…My favorite story was ‘The Tanuki Kettle’ (July 2007). I also liked ‘When Shakko Did Not Lie’…I really like stories about nature and animals.”
And the second, from a boy (no age specified), said:
“I think you mag is better than any T.V. show or magazine I’ve ever heard of. Also in the January 2008 issue the story ‘When Shakko Did Not Lie’ is an excellent choice for Cricket. I would like it if you put more of that kind of story in your mag.”
I think I melted into a big pile of “awww!” after reading those. And to top it off, the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Cricket, Marianne Carus, scribbled a line at the bottom of the second letter: “Those were great stories! My favorites, too.”
• “The Wiggly People” (audio reprint) in Drabblecast. Well, it’s not up yet, actually, but Norm Sherman, the editor/publisher dropped me a note on Monday saying it would go up today, so I’ve been hanging around the site, hitting F5 compulsively.
[Edit: It’s up now! Go listen!]
I’ve never heard of this “Jones” grouping before. I always understood the Baby Boomer generation to reach to 1960.
I was born in ’59.
I’d never heard of Generation Jones before, just stumbled across a reference to it, but it triggered an “ah-hah” moment.
has commented several times in the past that although he falls into the tail end of the Baby Boomer era, he’s always felt like he’s shared more in common with Xers. And he and I have so many generational attitudes in common (I’m smack dab in the middle of Gen X) that I kept thinking that the demographic definitions had to be skewed, that it felt like the Boomer cutoff should’ve been a bunch of years earlier than ’64(ish).
One thought: The toys taken for granted and enjoyed by Gen Y were invented/developed/designed by Gens X, Jones, and Boomers. Why WOULDN”T the generations that worked all this stuff up not want to play too?
I am Generation Jones (though I’ve never seen that monicker before.) b. 1964, graduated HS 1982, college 1986. Too young for a baby boomer, a child of the sixties only on a technicality (I was 5 when Woodstock happened) but too old to be a Gen X-er. Not that I spend a lot of cycles having angst over this, but I’ve always felt my demographic was simply missing from the cultural discourse.
Re: Generation Man
I feel that way a lot too, Jay, as someone who was born in 1980. I don’t really fit in with the gen X-ers and I don’t really seem to fit in with the gen Y-ers. I pick Gen-Y only because it seems really silly to say that I’m in a different generation than someone who is only four months younger than I am, particularly when someone born in 1981 has roughly the same memories of the Berlin Wall, the Regan Era, the Challenger disaster, etc. as I do.
Re: Generation Man
My husband’s also a Generation Jones, and he’s mentioned to me several times that he’s felt the same way you do, like his demographic just wasn’t figured into any of the sociocultural discussions. When I first stumbled upon a reference to Generation Jones—and then looked it up—I immediately emailed him with the news that he wasn’t a Boomer, he was a Jones. ‘Course, his comment was: “what a boring generation name.”
Re: Generation Man
I feel the same way. Boomers are, to me, people 10-15 years older than I am, even though I’m technically one of them. I never felt a part of their generation. I was only 8 when Woodstock happened.
I also never felt a part of Gen X; they always seemed to be much younger than I. Interesting that they’ve come up with a name for us! I agree with your husband, though – boring name!
I was born in 1978, and it really does feel like I’m in the tail end of a generational cohort. I go around feeling like I’m “about the same age” as my friends who are two or three years younger than me, and then something comes up where we clearly had such different experiences that we might as well have thirty years between us. I rarely-to-never have this experience with friends who are only a few years older than me.
aarrrggh. 78? you make me feel old. 😉
Yes, I am a full-grown published science fiction author, and there has not been a human being on the moon in my lifetime.
well, there has not been a human being on the moon that you know about in your lifetime.
we try to keep a low profile, ya know.
That’s what I think of when I think of you, Lawrence: low profile. Fades right on into the woodwork, that Lawrence; wish he wasn’t so easy to confuse with the other fellas with buffalo on their shoulders.
ahem, buffalito, please. not “buffalo.”
I picked Y because I was born in late 1980 (August) and I think I have more in common with this generation than with Gen-Xers. I mean, I’m 27 and the oldest of them would be 43 or so. I don’t think my concerns – culturally, sociologically – have much in common with a 40 something’s, seeing as I’m not even 30 yet. I can’t imagine the issues that are relevant to me are very different from someone who is 26 and born a few months after I was born.
Officially a Gen Xer, but I have more in common with Jonesers.
Trivium: My mother is actually a member of the Silent Generation. So we have roughly three generations between us.
I also find myself having to vote outside my chronological generation, as I’ve got more in common with the one after.
Contributing to the decline of scientific rigour, one poll at a time…
Re: Generation Man
Supposedly I’m an X’er, but I never really felt a connection to that group.
I’ve been unable to find the page I had previously on the “Baby Busters”, ’60 to ’72 when the birth rate dropped, with the lowest point in ’67 ( my year ).
I knew I wasn’t a true baby boomer, but didn’t feel I was anything. Wow, I have an identity now – just kidding. The description of Generation Jones didn’t fit too well, especially the leaning to the right, perhaps for non- Americans there is a different description.
I was born in ’73. Solid Gen X.
Well, I’m technically in Generation X, but I have a lot of Gen Y/Millenials characteristics because I did grow up with computers and got involved in BBSes at a relatively early age. Back before there was IM, there was BBS telechat…
Jones is also called the ‘Tweener Generation’ or the ‘Post-Boomers’ (and the dates they have for jones are off, since generally a generation is counted as a decade period).
It all depends on where you read and who’s making it up, since it’s not very exact.
I guess I’m a Joneser. Does that mean people are trying to keep up with me?
I feel much like Jay and others who say we don’t seem to be represented by the usual accepted categories. On the other hand, my boy is definitely a boomer and an excellent programmer who understands the cyber realm quite well.
On the other hand (just thinking aloud here), he doesn’t unthinkingly adopt new shiny and easily incorporate it into his arsenal of tech like his generation might with, say, a toaster or a radio. He is of the inventor generation, not the exploiter generation, if that makes any sense. I’m a bit of both.
But all of us, i.e. your friends, are mostly GenX’ers. LJ in general is more GenY I think.
I really hate “Generation X”. I prefer to think of being part of “the 13th Generation” (from a book by Neil Howe called Gen 13) or MTV Generation as it’s a ‘tween generation, not exactly X, not exactly Y.
VERY Nice Cricket fan reviews and editor.s note.
That’s so cute! It makes writing kid’s stuff worth it! Just picked up ROF with “Daughter of Botu”. Looking forward to reading it!