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I Invented a Holiday Called National Magazine Day

| Essays

What:  Magazine Day: a celebration of magazines and attacking the stack of unread titles piling up next to your bathroom sink.

When: Saturday, February 27th, 2010. That’s in a little over 2 weeks. It’s also my dad’s birthday. He got me hooked on magazines as a young pup.

How? On Saturday, February 27th, ordinary folk across America (like you, like me) will spend the day “attacking the stack” or reading their way through the unread magazines they’ve accumulated. If you’re a big goody-goody and read your magazines straight through the moment they arrive, you may spend the day at your local library/bookstore/university exploring new periodicals, discussing your favorite magazines with friends, tweeting your favorite articles. As you wish.

Where: I live in San Francisco, California and will be hosting a Magazine Day celebration at Booksmith bookstore in the Haight-Ashbury neighborhood from 1-6 PM. Five dollars reserves you a spot which includes all the coffee you can drink, all the snacks you can eat, free reign of the store’s ample magazine racks and admission to a 6 PM panel discussion entitled “The Future of Magazines.”

Magazine Day is open to everyone, no matter where you are. Invite friends over and rumage though each other’s stacks. Spend the day reading at your local coffee shop or library. Multch your magazines and construct a giant paper mache wildebeest. It’s up to you. The idea is to spend the day having fun and forming community around a shared love of magazines.

Why? 90% of Americans read magazines, including me. I love magazines and hate waste. I buy way more magazines than I could ever read so without designating time for them, they will remain next to my toilet gathering dust. And that’s a shame.

Does that sound familiar?

Who’s idea was this? Mostly mine. I’m Kevin Smokler. Although friends and followers on Twitter did plenty of egging on.

Colophon:

  • In the next few days, I’ll be putting together an FAQ and  “How to Host a Magazine Day Party” dossier. Keep an eye out.
  • I’m defining “magazine” as “any collection of printed matter you’d like to read that isn’t a book.” Newspapers count. Xeroxed articles gathered in a pile? Fine.
  • This is not a project sponsored by or in conjunction with my employer BookTour.com.
  • Magazine Day questions can be left in the comment section here or on twitter under the hashtag #magazineday.