Don’t you just love it when someone takes conventional wisdom and turns it inside out and upside down — and comes out ahead? That’s exactly what a new magazine, Lucky Peach, is doing — and its burgeoning success is good news for print addicts like me (hope you’re with me on this!)
As its juicy title suggests, Lucky Peach focuses on food. It’s the brainchild of a chef named David Chang and Peter Meehan, a writer. They resisted the siren song of digital mania and opted for what was once a traditional vehicle, but is now downright endangered: an honest-to-goodness magazine that you can actually hold in your hands — and one without any glossy ads no less! Downright subversive!
Forget about the fact that Gourmet, a magazine beloved by foodies everywhere, bit the dust a few years ago. Forget about the fact that print ads are disappearing from magazines. That’s exactly what David and Peter did — they forgot all about this and did something dangerous instead: they created a lively, visually appealing, spicily written magazine with no ads and sold it for ten bucks an issue. And guess what? It sold out its first printing of 40,000 and its second printing of 12,000 as well.
Magazines are folding left and right; in order to survive, they have to offer readers something special. That’s where McSweeney’s, a small publishing company, comes in. Working with Lucky Peach’s creators, it’s produced a high-quality, text-heavy magazine that has a rich, hefty feel to it — something no Kindle can offer. Write on McSweeney’s!