A few words on where Film Stories and Film Stories Junior currently are, and the plan for both of them going forward.
Firstly, most importantly, let me start with this: I hope you’re all well and safe. That’s far more important than anything I’m about to say. I do genuinely mean that.
I’m about to waffle, I should warn you, about the two independent print film magazines that I founded: Film Stories and Film Stories Junior. Both have been running for over a year now, and across the two publications, 22 issues have been published to date, showcasing hundreds of writers and loads of interesting films.
Inevitably, sadly, the ramifications of the past few months have taken their toll though. For the first time at the start of the year, an issue was agonisingly close to breaking even. And then, within two weeks of the year’s events taking hold, it all went pretty much back to square one.
I want, therefore, to let you know what I’m up to.
Firstly, issue 19 of Film Stories and issue 5 of Film Stories Junior are being worked on. Film Stories 19 is running a few weeks behind, due to matters out of my own hands. Hopefully it’ll be worth the wait, and apologies for it. Film Stories Junior issue 5 is coming too, and that’s due at the end of October.
Secondly, I’m launching a fresh Kickstarter campaign to take both magazines forward. And I wanted to explain that, and why I’m doing it.
When I started Film Stories in print, I was adamant I’d never be one of those publications that if the worst came to the worst and I went under, I’d run away to a nice beach with everyone’s money. As such, I made a promise to myself that when I reached the point whereby all I had left in the bank was enough to refund everyone for unpublished issues, I’d have to make some changes.
The events of the past few months have led me to that point.
Film Stories and Film Stories Junior have never made me a penny. Not necessarily by choice, but it sounds very honourable to say they’re not for profit! Nonetheless, I’ve kept them going thanks to the goodwill and brilliance of people willing to work for less than their work deserves – although everyone but me has been paid – and by subsidising them myself as much as I can.
I can’t do that anymore.
But I do think Film Stories and Film Stories Junior have a lot, lot more to give. I think there are so many more films we can tell you about, so many brilliant movies that we can give coverage to they likely won’t get elsewhere, and so many amazing writers out there whose voices we want to hear.
Thus, the new Kickstarter campaign.
It was Kickstarter that allowed me to launch both magazines in the first place, and I’m putting both titles together into one campaign this time around. The overall target is £30,000. It’s genuinely the bare minimum I need as I look to press head well into next year. The funds will go to the print costs, paying writers, making the magazine and basically towards everything to do with the publications apart from me. I know it’s a long shot asking for £30,000, and I’m very appreciative of all the support I’ve had to this point. I do not take it for granted, and am proud of the magazines that you’ve helped me make.
I’ve got to this point, after nearly two years of Film Stories, because of the support of other people. It’s really that simple. And I know things are tight for many of us at the moment, so am well aware that this isn’t a great time to launch any kind of funding. If it doesn’t work, it doesn’t work, and I know I’ll have to make very big changes.
But I’m determined to try. I’m nothing if not a persistent pain in the backside. And I thank you for reading this far. I genuinely believe in these magazines. I believe they’re offering something a little different. I believe they’re also offering a tiny way in for films and writers for whom lots of ladders of opportunities
I will answer any questions you have about all of this in the comments. Thanks for reading. Thanks for your support. And again, the most important thing, you all stay well.
Support us on Kickstarter as we fundraise for the future of Film Stories and Film Stories Junior magazines here (and thank you).