When last I wrote a Letter from the Editor, Boshemia Blog had been publishing online just shy of two months. Now, it will be one month since launching our print magazine.
On June 16, some of our closest friends, family, and people who came in from the street gathered around The Marina Bar in Plymouth, England, to celebrate our magazine launching. We sold a batch of copies of our first printing, drank a fair bit of gin, and read from our magazine to a happy crowd, all bathed in pink and lavender lights.
If I had to capture the evening in a moment, it would look like this:
As L read the last line of her essay, A Letter to My 18-Year-Old Self, her voice cracked with emotion as she said, “now it’s time to shake things up.” There was a definitive shift in that moment, watching her and taking in the magazine aloud for the first time; Boshemia was tangible, alive. We were shaking things up.
* * *
In those first two weeks that followed, we sold every copy we printed [that’s 140 copies then, and counting]. As of yesterday, we just received the second batch of Issue 01 in our US and UK HQs. So we are back in business, shipping our ‘zine around the world.
Since our launch one month ago, we have been incredibly lucky to stock our magazine in the most interesting and unusual places, like seaside bars, bookish cafes, record shops, and radical leftist bookstores. Presently, we are selling in England, Scotland, and the US. Here is a highlight of our new vendors of as this week:
Ideas on Paper – Nottingham, England
Rough Trade – Nottingham, England
Five Leaves Books – Nottingham, England
Prime Cafe – Plymouth, England
Marina Bar – Plymouth, England
Lighthouse Books – Edinburgh, Scotland
Four Seasons Books – Shepherdstown, United States
Fantom Comics – Washington, D.C., United States
While we are in talks with other vendors, if you do not find yourself in any of these cities, the best place to source your copy is through our online shop.
* * *
Boshemia is loving this experience of cultivating relationships with independent bookshops and little centers of culture. Seeing our magazine in institutions that foster independent thinking, fearless creativity, civic engagement, and open discourse is a surreal dream. Tomorrow, I’ll be at DC Zine Fest to meet with other self-published creatives to share our work, attend workshops, and scope out all of the up-and-coming zines. I can’t wait to see what indie publishers in my city have to offer. While I’m at Zine Fest in America, across the pond, L is off to Bristol to stock our new vendors, and Q is continuing her adventures in London, scouting out new shops for Boshemia Magazine.
Apart from the magazine work, we are also busy behind the scenes with Boshemia Blog operations. Over the next few weeks, we will be screening applicants for our inaugural internship program. Beginning this autumn, one intrepid uni student will have the opportunity to work on Issue 02 of the magazine as our editorial assistant.
As we are heading into the development phase of Issue 02 next month, this is the dreamiest stage of our work. I call to mind a photo of L and Q during a production meeting at Prime, one of our first booksellers and favorite spots to be together. This moment captures well the feeling of our work: it begins with dialogue, a shared belief in seizing the means of production, and a lot of love for each other. Some days, I can’t believe we get to create like this; what a joy to make work you believe in, and with people you love.
Stay tuned for more developments.