in the last 48 hours i have talked to three different sets of friends located in three different parts of the united states about starting a print magazine. they are all hoping to start a nice glossy title, with beautiful visuals and smart content. peeps were picking my brain 'cause i've had the awesome opportunity of working from start to success at pre lost in translation, japan is cool title, tokion magazine for 4 years. i am still the video game editor at tokion but past responsibilities under the guise of operations manager included: distribution, circulation, day-to-day ops, financial management, reviews, pr and hustler of culture.
friend A is starting a magazine right here in new york city. it's a food magazine for people like us (if you're reading this, you're included). in her own words, "It's a younger market (18 - 35) food(ie) magazine. A hipper Saveur or Gourmet...and mostly, to make food fun for young people who think its a pain in the ass to cook or decipher a wine list or even know more about what they're eating...we want it to be good looking, non-pretentious, funny, and highly readable."
friend A has already started the title and is launching in january. the magazine is self financed and friend A has asked me to write for them. i believe this magazine will succeed if it can survive it's first year. it's a niche title i think with a rather large market.
friend B is starting a magazine in los angeles. it's lifestyle magazine with a focus on contemporary art. think tastemakers plus savvy marketing and a bona fide artist/graphic designer with mad street cred. if you know anything about street art, note that this title is launching through the most "up" person in the world. in his own words, "XXX will be the first ever, non-disposable periodical focusing on pop culture. XXX magazine serves to fill a void for readers who desire a magazine that isn't too serious, is funny and smart, slightly irreverent but progressive, appeals to both genders, introduces new and rare products, and is coupled with fresh, modern graphic design...The magazine will be kept collected and coveted, as owning every issue will be akin to having a collection of pop culture artifacts."
friend B will succeed because friend B has a built in big ass audience who worships him. the magazine is self financed and friend B has asked me to write for them. friend B has built a small media empire from the street up, literally. he knows guerilla marketing.
friend C is starting a lifestyle gaming magazine with some peeps in san francisco. they are looking for a backer. conde nast are you paying attention? it won't be the typical review-title, instead exploring the stories behind the gaming community with maybe features about how gaming affects our lives. my understanding is the magazine's mission/definition has not yet been set, and that it's in the earliest stages of formation and it seems promising. in other words, there isn't a match title or anything like it at market. if it flies, it's going to be hot! friend C is a veteran of the gaming community and already has a loyal readership. whether or not the readers follow to magazine format will be interesting to observe.
i hope they all succeed. bless them for trying.