Nieman Foundation at Harvard
America’s Test Kitchen, “the Consumer Reports of cooking,” wants to grow to new platforms
ABOUT                    SUBSCRIBE
Sept. 29, 2009, 11 a.m.

Publishing a magazine in 31.5 hours

Derek Powazek — one of the earliest thinkers about building community around websites — has written a post about the day-and-a-half turnaround time he had to produce a one-off magazine called Strange Light.

The magazine’s subject is that amazing and gorgeous duststorm that hit eastern Australia last week. From the idea to the final product — which featured 54 photos of the storm, each use with the permission of its photographer — took less than two days.

News organizations have, over the years, gotten pretty good at quick-turnaround books; I’m thinking of the sort of thing that papers put out when the local team wins a Super Bowl. But those still require a lot of advance planning and the work of a lot of staffers. Derek’s post is a reminder that, with today’s digital production tools and advances in small-batch printing, one person can assemble a high-quality print product in hours.

Derek produced Strange Light using MagCloud, an HP project he’s been involved in. I’ve written before about how Time Inc. is experimenting with customized single-copy magazine runs. At the book level, I’ve used Lulu to print two different paperback books — each with a print run of one — and I’ve been happy with the final product. Whatever the vendor, small-batch niche publishing doesn’t have to be solely an online affair; it can live on paper too.

POSTED     Sept. 29, 2009, 11 a.m.
Show comments  
Show tags
Join the 15,000 who get the freshest future-of-journalism news in our daily email.
America’s Test Kitchen, “the Consumer Reports of cooking,” wants to grow to new platforms
“We’d like to move to other platforms, particularly as we see the changes in how people consume television.”
A program from Poynter and ONA is helping foster a community of female leaders in digital media
The Women’s Leadership Academy provides camaraderie and concrete advice beyond a bundle of platitudes.
Come talk ad blockers with Nieman Lab and a set of experts in New York
We’re having our first event in New York City with industry leaders: Wednesday, December 2 at 6 p.m.
What to read next
How one blog helped spark The New York Times’ digital evolution
“I certainly had editors tell me that I shouldn’t be wasting my time on Bird Week. But that was the best part of City Room…We were like unsupervised children.”
572News outlets left and right (and up, down, and center) are embracing virtual reality technology
Among those experimenting is The Wall Street Journal, which plans to open source its 360-degree mobile video and VR technology and hopes to turn VR into more of a mainstay of its storytelling.
502Podcasting in 2015 feels a lot like blogging circa 2004: exciting, evolving, and trouble for incumbents
The same trends we saw a decade ago — professionalization on one hand, platformization on the other — sure seem to be playing out again.
These stories are our most popular on Twitter over the past 30 days.
See all our most recent pieces ➚
Encyclo is our encyclopedia of the future of news, chronicling the key players in journalism’s evolution.
Here are a few of the entries you’ll find in Encyclo.   Get the full Encyclo ➚
The Boston Globe
USA Today
Seattle PostGlobe
MediaNews Group
Voice of San Diego
Investigative News Network