'Lucia' Magazine Celebrates Truth And Beauty In All Things, And It's Definitely The Publication We Need
A growing number of magazines recently have been bucking the trends of most mainstream publications. A few months ago, we heard about Catalyst, a feminist and all-inclusive wedding magazine — and now we have Lucia, a body positive magazine that celebrates truth and beauty in all things, with absolutely no advertising contained within its pages. Awesome? Awesome. And since I happen to share a name with the magazine (albeit pronounced a little differently — the mag's name is “Loo-see-ah,” while mine is two syllables, with the “ci” making a “sh” sound)...well, I couldn't very well not cover it, right?
A quarterly, independent, and totally ad-free publication, Lucia aims to fill a huge void in the magazine world. Said founder Laura Lowery in the magazine's Kickstarter campaign video, “We are inundated with so many false messages about who we should be, how we should live, what we should look like — and yet there's this spirit, this voice that comes from somewhere quiet and deep, and it whispers truth. I wanted to create a magazine that gives voice to the heart.” This, then, is Lucia's goal — or, as Lowery further described on the journal's website, “We created Lucia to meet a deep desire I think most people today relate with: The heart's longing to be moved, feel inspired, and connect with what is real. You won't find magazine advertising or airbrushed models anywhere in our pages. Instead you will find beauty, magnificence, and truth — loads of it.” I'm sure I'm not the only one who read all that and thought, Heck. Yes.
Lowery has already produced one issue of the magazine, and she's currently running a Kickstarter campaign to get the second issue off the ground. Why Kickstarter? To help the publication grow. According to Lucia's campaign page, Lowery paid for the first issue completely out of her own savings; printing 3,000 copies cost almost $20,000, even with every contributor writing for free. In order to make the next issue, Lowery and her team need to raise $60,000 — not only to print the copies, cover the Kickstarter campaign costs, and “pay the rent and keep the lights on,” but also (and perhaps most importantly) to be able to compensate for the magazine's writers, contributors, and design and editorial advisors, all of whom Lowery describes as “incredible.” While I've no doubt that everyone who contributed to the first issue of Lucia for free did it because it's a project they believe in, I am a firm supporter of always compensating people for their work; too often creatives get "paid" solely in “exposure” and “résumé-building,” so I applaud Lowery for making it part of her mission to pay all those contributors in actual money.
Although the Kickstarter campaign is raising funds for only one issue, it's the first step toward making Lucia a sustainable publication. Lowery has been speaking to distributors for the second issue, which she hopes to release in September — according to Lowery, distributors don't pay the magazine team until at least 60 days after issues sell. Lowery has nearly 20 years of experience in communications and PR and believes she has a viable business plan; she also believes that Lucia will sell. The publication just needs a little push to get over that first hump, and then hopefully it will start taking care of itself.
And in case you didn't think this project could get any better, there's also this: The magazine has pledged that, once it becomes self-sustaining, it will begin giving back to the community by donating five percent of its profits each year to “inspiring nonprofit organizations that directly support women.” Lowery has already spoken with New Beginnings, which works to support victims of — and hopefully eventually end — domestic violence; if Lucia is successful, many more will follow. As of this writing, they've raised just shy of $13,500; they have until June 12 to hit their goal of $60,000.
Check out the campaign video below, kick in a few bucks at Kickstarter, and find out more at Lucia's home on the Web (where you can even read selected stories from the first issue). I don't know about you guys, but I can't wait to see what this project might yield — it's got potential in droves.