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Contributors’ Notes


This is a magazine without a masthead. Or, to put it another way, our Contributors’ Notes are our masthead. The magazine was written, edited, and fact checked by our contributors, all students at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism. Victor Navasky and Amy Wilentz served as faculty advisers. Scott Sherman acted as managing editor. Sam Antupit was the art director. Sam Wong and John Giuffo implemented the design and production.


Jamie Jones: (email: [email protected])
A South Carolinian with an English degree, Jones had to withstand the rescheduling of a single interview several times in order to speak with the elusive fiction editor at The New Yorker, Bill Buford, for The New York Review of Magazines. The painful, arcane, and near-humiliating experience taught Jones what it must be like to actually submit a short story to The New Yorker’s fiction department, with its bins of unread prose and its more than quirky selection methods.

Anne Hemmett Stern (email: [email protected])
It was Stern’s liflong love of pets (at six she had a family of pet rats that she’d wheel around her neighborhood in a baby carriage; now she has a scruffy dog called Baxter) that led her to review Animal Fair magazine. Her article on the undervalued art of writing letters to the editor makes you wonder if you, as a letter writer, are a Captious Corrector, a Hectoring Historian, or simply, a Splenetic Subject.

Kristan Zimmer (email: [email protected])
Zimmer has written Rosie O’Donnell an open letter to the editor to comment on the launch issue of Rosie (the magazine). Zimmer also contributed a personal essay on her torrid relationship with in-flight magazines.

Catherine Lee (email: [email protected])
A former Saatchi and Saatchi employee, Lee has written an article about how Esquire turned from a macho male, dirty-fisted fly fisherman in the 1950s to the tender-hearted, scent-using, deodorized sweetheart we see evoked in its pages today. She also developed our Table of Contents quiz. Guess which magazine has buried its Table of Contents under the largest mound of advertising….

Sandra Adams (email: [email protected])
Former corporate lawyer Sandra Adams has recently discovered a talent for writing haiku. Her verse on the travails of trees (the poor things are turned into magazines like this one!) rivals any heroic, tragic saga. In addition, Adams examines the battle between the publisher of D magazine in Dallas and his hot and sexy New York fashion advertisers. The man went head to head (so to speak) with Gucci — and his magazine survived.

Bryan Close (email: [email protected])
Close was an actor for almost ten years, and once lost 20 pounds in India, so he knows lean living. His piece on two New York freelance writers and their tribulations and triumphs does not neglect to examine the financial pain endured by such fabulous and courageous types. Close also takes on Vanity Fair and creates our Watching the Watchers department, in which he evaluates other magazines’ thumbs-up-thumbs-down columns.

Kate Novack (email: [email protected])
A refugee from the world of politics and public relations, Novack, a Boston native, was ready for duty checking out the magazine flow at kiosks, newsstands and subway outlets all over town. What bliss it then seemed to take up watch at a cozy Barnes & Noble’s newsrack, or within the warm hominess of a Gristedes Superstore checkout line. Novack’s politically charged article on the ongoing power and market struggles between the country’s most visible African-American magazines is a prime example of what TNYRM does best. It’s a thoughtful and provocative investigation into a much overlooked subject.

Prue Clarke (email: [email protected])
Clarke is a finance reporter with the Australian Broadcasting Corporation in Sydney, Australia. She has degrees in economics and international affairs. You should consider yourself lucky even to be reading her article on The Weekly Standard.

Pamela Clark (email: [email protected])
Business writer Clark (not related to “Clarke” although, similarly, Australian) worked for ten years at IBM. Clark’s article on Golf Digest’s changing ownership looks at two trends in the industry: the overwhelming power of consolidation in magazines and the importance of celebrities in marketing them (in this case, the boyish Tiger Woods). Clark also takes a separate look at the struggle of independent magazines to make it in a world of media consolidation. It’s hard. You should fund TNYRM immediately.

Nina Rayburn Dec (email: [email protected])
Dec helped start a non-profit organization to assist women in the entertainment industry. In this issue, she tracks this year’s magazine start-ups and failures. Her piece on movies that have been made from magazine articles explains what the two media have in common, and why we love movies based on journalism. She has been known to write under the pseudonism of a Great Neck housewife. After graduation, Dec hopes to continue writing about film, music and theater.

Diana Wang (email: [email protected])
Wang’s piece on aMagazine takes a personal look at the nation’s most successful publication catering to Asian Americans, and also explains what it means to the growing and changing Asian-American community. Wang also lent a hand and a pair of eyes and gloves to the frigid zone of TNYRM’s newsstand watch.

Dore Carroll (email: [email protected])
Carroll’s article on Harper’s publisher Rick MacArthur examines at a maverick who spends half his time raising money for his magazine (like any publisher) and the other half alienating advertisers — on moral grounds! Her piece on magazine distributors helps explain why we see Vogue or Bazaar splashed across certain newsstands and why small magazines get squeezed out. Also, you can decorate your home in the soothing black and white of Carroll’s Wallpaper* review.

Tina Guarino (email: [email protected])
Guarino is a get-up-and-goer who always has a new line on an old thing. In this issue she celebrates the first birthday of O (The Oprah magazine). What is it that Guarino finds so compelling about O (besides the bright little colored square in the logo)? It’s the way you feel when you read it, she says, as if you’re surrounded by a close-knit group of the best kind of girl friends.

Anna-Sophie Loewenberg (email: [email protected])
When Loewenberg lived in China, she worked for Beijing Scene, a weekly magazine. Here, she looks at ReDegg, a Chinese technology magazine modeled on America’s amazing stand-alone start-up, Red Herring. Loewenberg delves into the problems ReDegg has encountered, publishing in a world that has only recently opened up to the idea of private media. She also contributed some steam to our cold-weather kiosk watch, and is this month’s Ad Watch columnist.

Jennifer Pinkowski (email: [email protected])
A former vegetarian who now adores bacon and all varieties of cow, Pinkowski concentrated her innate hostility towards all things snotty into an equally snotty review of Tycoon magazine. Though she also writes fiction, her piece on religion magazines is entirely factual. She culled this month’s contributors notes from each one of our contributors, a sisyphean task. Amazingly, Pinkowski once slept through a tsunami warning — blaring sirens failed to rouse her. Imagine our editorial meetings.

Devyani Onial (email: [email protected])
Onial oversaw the far-flung correspondents who fanned out over the triborough area to get the dope on newsstand sales. She interviewed Time magazine’s world editor Joshua Ramo and discussed with him how he and Time became involved in a kind of worldwide civic journalism campaign, encouraging readers to buy safe birthing boxes — complete with razor and clean cloth — for women in Africa, and to contribute to various other good causes in the Third World.

John Giuffo ([email protected])
Giuffo grew up reading comics and often dreamed of the day when he would write and draw his own. Then the comic book industry collapsed, publishers folded and he woke up. This journalism thing is his fallback calling. He profiles comics journalist Joe Sacco on the subject of serious comics and their place in magazines and books. He also reviews The Comics Journal in our back pages; both pieces seem to prove that you can never really escape your past. He has also been an invaluable design and production adviser to the magazine.

Katie Prout (email: [email protected])
Prout provides us with a useful and amusing abecedary (look it up!!) of magazine titles from A to Z. To prove that she really knows her English grammar, she’s also written a piece for TNYRM about the prominence of British writers in American journalism. She tries to answer the questions we’ve all been asking about the British invasion: How did they get so smart? How come they’re so tough? And worst of all: Why do they know so much? Don’t worry, Prout concludes: They’re not genetically superior. It’s all in their education.