Entries by Erin Peterson

‘Every Page Should Make An Attempt To Draw Attention.’

I was delighted to talk to this year’s Sibley-winning editor: Joe Wakelee-Lynch. Joe is editor of LMU Magazine from Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles. The magazine is gorgeous and ambitious and singular. (You can read the report from judges here.) Joe has been with the university since 2006, and the story topics and approaches reflect […]

Interview Fundamentals: 3 Perfect Questions

Years ago, when I first started interviewing folks for alumni magazines, I could not have been more terrible at asking questions. Once, while interviewing a recent grad whose short stories had been widely praised, I asked the following “question.” “I read that your work has been compared to Italo Calvino’s. That must be pretty cool.” […]

Mag going digital? Here’s how to get readers to click

I’ve heard from many of you that you’ll be taking your magazine digital for one or more issues. While it definitely saves money on printing and mailing costs, it will also likely require some dramatic shifts in your editorial priorities. You can no longer literally “push” the publication into your readers’ hands A move online typically […]

How Does A Print Magazine “Earn Its Keep” Right Now? Here Are 3 Ideas.

There’s no question that times are tough for higher ed these days. Some colleges are closing their doors for good. Others are mapping out layoffs, furloughs, and other drastic cuts. What happens this fall? It’s anybody’s guess. In the midst of these big changes, your magazine might be on the chopping block. At the very […]

The Exact 3 Messages To Share With Your Alumni Readers Right Now

What does your audience actually want to read these days? What stories can you tell that will feel like a welcome shift from the daily deluge of bad news? These are questions a lot of schools are asking right now. It’s not just that we don’t want stories to feel stale when they arrive on readers’ […]

A PSA On That COVID-19 Headline You Want To Use + Should Your Mag Go Online?

Last December, before everything got terrible, I groused privately to some friends that 2020 was going to be a year of bad headlines. I was already seeing a slew of “2020 Vision” stories, and I was pretty sure I’d see a million more. Obviously, that seems like a petty concern right now.  (Hindsight is ALSO […]

Avoid A Tone-Deaf Story. Here’s One To Try.

Recently, a Capstone client shipped a story back with a note to change the piece’s introduction. Written in pre-coronavirus times, the opening paragraphs felt glib. You might be experiencing something similar as you work through your editorial lineups. This concern isn’t likely to go away in your upcoming issue or the one after that. You’re going […]

COVID-19 Coverage: They Won’t Remember Late. They Will Remember Bad.

As you plan your institution’s COVID-19 coverage, here are some of the things we’re telling schools to think about for their upcoming issues. 1. You might miss your deadline. That’s okay. This is painful for me to say, because I am an anxious deadline meet-er. But let’s just be clear about the situation we’re in: […]