Meet Peter Spiller, editor of OutsideSanDiego.com.
Tell us about your dream assignment.
If it has to do with hiking, backpacking or kayaking, I am dreaming about it. I love to experience new exotic places. The scope of my writing for Outside San Diego centers around the place of my birth, but does not prevent me from dreaming about covering places far from home. Can you say Everest base camp?
What is your PR pet peeve?
Honesty is the best policy, and I always appreciate when a PR representative is completely honest with me. The majority of my contacts with PR people revolve around coordinating gear reviews on Outside San Diego. If a piece of gear is not available or not a good fit for my small publication, I appreciate being told this, rather than being told what they think I want to hear and then leaving me hanging. I do not take things personally, and I am very aware of what Outside San Diego brings to the table. If your clients are not ready to partner with us, there are others who are chomping at the bit. Be upfront, it works so well.
Top trend in the industry you’re currently covering or are interested in.
Sustainable and ecological manufacturing processes in making outdoor gear. As stewards of the outdoors, we all have a critical interest in keeping things wild for the generations to come. Manufacturing quality and reasonably priced, environmentally-sensitive outdoor gear will help future generations.
Tell us a little about yourself.
I started Outside San Diego 3-years ago as a way of documenting the incredible opportunities that San Diego, Southern California and beyond bring to the lover of the outdoors. The original concept for Outside San Diego was to bring practical information on outdoor activities to the people of San Diego. More specifically, to the students of San Diego’s long running backpacking course called Wilderness Basics.
Each winter for the last number of years, I have helped with a course sponsored by the San Diego Chapter of the Sierra Club called Wilderness Basics. Going on its fifth decade of continuous operation, this course provides an opportunity to learn about the outdoors for individuals with no background in hiking and camping in the backcountry. A staff of experienced and well-qualified leaders work together to help pay it forward by introducing newcomers to safe, sustainable methods of recreating in the wilderness, and hopefully create more stewards of these lands by using John Muir’s concept of bringing people to our wild places. We offer to show them first-hand what needs to be protected. It worked when Muir brought Roosevelt to Yosemite to show him the need for National Parks. Outside San Diego was conceived with modest goals in mind, and I like to think that its unprecedented growth is a product of interesting content, and an honest, friendly approach to its niche.
Be sure to check back next time for the inside scoop on Rita Rubin, medical reporter for USA Today.