I write and edit for a living. (Yes, some people still do that.) My work has appeared in Allure, Marie Claire, InStyle, Women's Health and more. I've also held top editing positions at Cosmopolitan, Everyday with Rachael Ray and Martha Stewart's Whole Living. This is where I fight writer's block.
In 1993, The Coca-Cola Company decided they wanted capture the Generation X market by creating a new product that was unslick, cynical and anti-corporate. The result of that effort was OK Soda.
OK Soda was the brainchild of marketing executive Sergio Zyman, the marketing man behind Coca-Cola’s biggest product flop, New Coke.
Coca-Cola settled on the name OK after their research revealed that “Coke” was the second most recognizable word in the world, the first was “OK.”
Brian Lanahan, then-manager of special projects for Coke, told “Time Magazine” that they also went with the name OK because “It underpromises. It doesn’t say, ‘This is the next great thing.’ It’s the flip side of overclaiming.”
To give the cans and print ads an edgy look, OK Soda featured designs by “alternative” cartoonists Daniel Clowes (“Ghost World”) and Charles Burns (“Black Hole”).
Zyman created a non-traditional ad campaign in response to perceptions that Gen X’ers were cynical and disillusioned. Capitalizing on it, OK’s slogan was “Things are going to be OK”, and they even set-up a hotline 1-800-I-FEEL-OK.It even had it’s own “OK Manifesto,” that include statements like “What’s the point of OK? Well, what’s the point of anything?” and “There is no real secret to feeling OK.”
Despite its national media campaign, OK Soda was only tested in select markets in an attempt to create a buzz and demand. But, it failed to meet sales expectations and was officially discontinued by Coke in 1995.
Today it occasionally pops up on eBay, where empty cans fetch as much as 25 dollars.
Last Friday, the writer Emily Rapp’s three-year-old son Ronan passed away from Tay-Sachs disease. Because Emily is part of the greater Rumpus family, the site is honoring Ronan’s memory by publishing a tribute by her friend Jennifer Pastiloff. They’re also encouraging people to help fight Tay-Sachs disease here.
"This sentence has five words. Here are five more words. Five-word sentences are fine. But several together become monotonous. Listen to what is happening. The writing is getting boring. The sound of it drones. It’s like a stuck record. The ear demands some variety. Now listen. I vary the sentence length, and I create music. Music. The writing sings. It has a pleasant rhythm, a lilt, a harmony. I use short sentences. And I use sentences of medium length. And sometimes, when I am certain the reader is rested, I will engage him with a sentence of considerable length, a sentence that burns with energy and builds with all the impetus of a crescendo, the roll of the drums, the crash of the cymbals—sounds that say listen to this, it is important."