Generation X
How it all started

By Christopher Tyrone Ross

Reprinted with permission from
Saskatchewan Sage - April 1999 - pg. 6

Christopher Tyrone Ross
Christopher Tyrone Ross

For those of you who are still unfamiliar with the magazine Generation X . . . where the heck have you been?

It's the biggest thing to hit high schools since the cancellation of the Flintstones. It's the first magazine geared towards Aboriginal youth in Saskatchewan. As the chief editor and publisher of Generation X, I have experienced much in the field of journalism and business since it all began in January 1997. I was only 16 years old, living in the community of Fort Qu'Appelle. The first issue was published in February 1997. It was four pages long with a circulation of 400 copies. It was the beginning of something I could never have never imagined.

After publishing four issues, I moved to Saskatoon and created a new newspaper called Inner City Youth and distributed it to Inner City high schools. This time around it was 10 pages long with a circulation of 1,200 copies. I was 17, entering Grade 12 and it was the year I couldn't fail. But instead I ended short two credits of graduating.

In April 1998, I won the "Innovator" award at the first annual SaskTel Aboriginal Youth Awards of Excellence. This gave me the motivation to begin Generation X at the start of the new school year. In September of 1998 I released the first edition, the second issue was published in November and soon became a 10-page newspaper with a circulation of 2,000 copies.

If you saw the December issue, most of you will remember me on the cover in a dress shirt and tie, with slick hair and wearing a fancy Gitano watch while I was sitting on a chair looking like some kind of movie star. I mean, there's nothing wrong with over-exposure. Besides, that's what got me where I am today. Generation X isn't just your ordinary teen magazine. It's a 'zine geared towards everything based around the youth perspective. Our goal is to give a better name to Aboriginal youth because of the positive impact it will have on our people.

It is now April 1999, I'm 19 years old, and the magazine is bigger than ever, 20 pages long with a circulation of 2,500 copies. I have an editorial board of nine teenagers who are all writers and artists. Our clientele includes such organizations like the Federation of Saskatchewan Indian Nations. Sometimes I wonder how I got here or what catapulted me to this new level. The answer is motivation, initiative, education, and, especially, . . . staying drug and alcohol free.

And that's how Generation X all started.

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