Monday, June 16, 2008

Magazines That Work

1. No magazine should include more than 50pp of work. It should be able to be consumed in one concentrated sitting.

2. No magazine should have a run longer than three years. Magazines should be understood to be ephemeral.

3. A magazine should be the stage for one rather focused idea, or a handful of related themes, rather than a synthetic pulp absorbing everything it touches.

4. A magazine should be issued at least quarterly, to keep its conversation alive.

5. A magazine should be portable, and tend toward smaller formats. Ideally its distribution will be hand-to-hand.

6. A magazine's print runs should be small: no more than 500 copies, and no reprints for at least five years after publication.

7. A magazine is still a fetish object, but its borders needn't necessarily end at the page. It can be germinated publicly in the laboratory of a blog, for example, and pruned at an arbitrary moment when the concentration is right, to maximize the effect or arrival (however accidental) of an idea.