This is one of the stacks of books and magazines on my desk, the one that currently sits to the left of the keyboard I seem always to be typing at these days. Third from the top, beneath Offscreen magazine, and above Jan Tschichold's The Form of the Book, is a completely white, completely blank, fully-bound dummy of Éirways. Kevin O’Brien received it from our printers the other day. It’s a mock-up of the magazine so that we can get a sense of the paper we’ve chosen, the style of binding, the size, and the weight of our inaugural issue. At this point, it’s a bit like an unvarnished violin, or an un-iced cake, or an unplanted flower bed: full of potential and excitement. But there’s still loads of work to be done as we head at full steam towards the deadline we’ve set for ourselves of a spring publication date. We’re so excited to see what Éirways will look like when the words, images, poetry, and people of the first issue come to life on the page. To this end, I’ve been busy editing, writing, and talking, and Kevin has been working with fonts and photos and layouts, and spending time with his mind-bogglingly huge collection of recent and vintage magazines, looking for inspiration and ideas.
In addition to the content we’ve already announced, I’m thrilled that Issue #1 will contain a piece of non-fiction writing from Rob Doyle, whose novel Here Are the Young Men has received great acclaim in Ireland and the UK, and will be published in the U.S. this June. I’ll be having a chat with a fantastic printer and designer in Dublin, and I’m awaiting a contribution from a wonderful illustrator, stylist, and interior designer in London.
So, this is all to say that we’re getting there. Our plan is to have magazines in the mail to our subscribers in May, and all signs seem to be pointing to our making that deadline. Then of course, it’s straight into Issue #2...