In this, our annual arts issue, we feature extensive festival and pageant coverage, including an article looking at what the festivals do to nurture and encourage the arts in the next generation. This got me thinking about my profession as a writer and editor and the next generation of journalists. Last year, we started an internship program here at Firebrand, allowing writing and journalism students to join us for a semester and experience all aspects of magazine editorial. When asked why she was interested in interning, one of the first applicants replied, “Well, I know print is dead and all, but I’m still curious.” Maybe she thought she’d be getting archaeology credits?
While we have a robust digital presence, here at Firebrand we feel print is very much alive, and we are heartened to see that most of our applicants feel the same way. So with the next generation in mind, we asked our spring interns—Jackie Adams, Madeline Ewles and Amory Zschach—about what draws them to magazines and where they see the future of print.
Jackie: “Radio was supposed to have killed books, TV was supposed to have killed the radio, and movies were supposed to have killed everything, but they’re all still going strong. … The Internet is great for up-to-the-minute breaking news, quick entertainment and offering a variety of voices, but the majority of it just doesn’t carry the validity that print does. Because there’s a finite amount of stories that say, The New York Times can print, it adds weight. A reader knows that each and every story has been pitched, approved, researched and composed by someone with credentials, and then edited and fact-checked by more people. And because it is permanent, once it gets sent out into the world there’s no recalling a magazine or newspaper—there’s accountability. I think people, whether they realize it or not, innately trust print a lot more than they do the Internet.”
Madeline: “Nothing can compare to the connection made between a person and print media. Picking up a magazine or newspaper during the day gives us a break from our screens. Print media has character. … I love the vibrant, glossy images and the slick texture of the pages. I love the research involved in magazine work and seeing a story idea come to life. I love the exciting, fast pace of the industry, and it’s thrilling to be a part of something so much larger than yourself. As a journalist you have opportunities to meet interesting people and become aware and well-informed about a variety of subjects and events.”
Amory: “As an avid magazine subscriber, I love having the pages of talented writers and graphic designers at my fingertips. I can rip out what inspires me and hang it on my fridge for visual inspiration. Print also allows us to be carefree and mobile, as it goes where we go at any given whim. Books and magazines don’t mind being covered in sand on the beach, piled on in a vagabond’s luggage or taken on adventures for days without a power outlet.”
Print is indeed alive and well on these pages, and we hope they inspire you to tear them out if you want, or take the magazine wherever your travels and daily adventures take you. Here’s to the next generation and their creativity—whatever the medium.
Micaela Myers, Group Editor