As you know, EMG-Zine will be getting a bit of a shakeup here shortly, due to Megan leaving to concentrate on her new bundle of joy. I have two candidates for her position that I am deliberating between right now, both of them really exciting possibilities. I don't think we could go wrong with either of them and I'm trying to figure out how to work both into our staff.
But other things, they'll be a-changing, too...
We're going free. There haven't been enough subscribers to support that business model, and I'm not awfully keen on continuing it. It was never really my purpose to lock things up, and I don't see it being particularly [i]effective[/i]. It's also something else to track and maintain, and I need more of that like I need holes in my head. There are only two people with subscriptions right now, I will see that they are justly compensated or refunded.
Yes, that means that all of writers pay has been coming out of my pocket. Er, supply pile. Whatever. And while I'm generous, I'm not THAT generous.
So, we're also adding ads. OMG, ads! Oh, no! They'll be small, tasteful, and paid. Low rates, starting out with invitation-only, random rotations, all ads will be individually approved. I may need someone to manage this part of things for me, but I hope to get software added that will do most of the heavy lifting... Don't worry, I'm not going all Epilogue on you. I may not even allow animations. We'll see...
The industry news is getting axed. One person ever used it that wasn't a spammer. Pff... I thought it was a good idea, but I'm getting used to being proved wrong!
Reviews are being ashcanned. I thought they'd be a great draw for writers who wanted something less stressful than a feature to write, but what a headache trying to get work for it! We've been stretching the theme, and it seems like the only one who reviews companies and other art-related and relevant tools is me. I don't need that, either. There's only so much arm-twisting I'm going to try to do. Too bad, too sad. No more reviews.
I will be accepting pre-published tutorials and features. They will be paid only token credit, $5 per article, as opposed to the $15 of fresh, new features. Again, I'm tired of arm-twisting and begging, and watching people post GREAT material without sending it my way first (I dunno if they don't think I would want it, or if they just don't remember EMG-Zine at all!), and several writers have expressed their desire to be able to send in something they've already had up. I'd rather have more work than restrictions, and some of it at least will still be fresh for our audience. Since we're not charging for it anymore, I see no reason to be so snooty.
The art gallery is getting restructured. I'm not entirely sure what direction I'll go here yet, but I'm thinking that I will make it a themed showcase for Fantastic Portfolios - basically do a search at FP and link to those pages (instead of popping up just the picture as it does now) from the thumbnail gallery. This will get rid of the need for the art board entirely (again, the nagging issues), and I won't have to ask for themed submissions (AGAIN, the nagging) or make people go through any extra steps. Managing artists = herding cats. Seriously. They're as bad as engineers. This probably will happen later than the other changes, because FP isn't very full yet!
The anthology I still have high hopes for, but I'm getting VERY grumpy about the printer. I swear - is there some printer conspiracy? Have they all banded together and tell horrible stories about that Ellen dame who has these unreasonable expectations like ACTUALLY GETTING HER BOOKS and have they made a pact to keep her from getting any actual printed books EVER? The proofs were really promising... the silence since then is REALLY NOT.
And while we're on the topic - a HUGE thank you to the fiction contributors! I always thought that the fiction would be yaknow, one or two, maybe, but several months now, we've had more fiction than features, and while that's not the topic of the 'zine as I was aiming for, I'm thinking I should extend some kind of reward... maybe an editor's choice every month that gets some pay or something? I dunno, but a big thank you to you guys.
I've rambled on a lot! Let me know what you think of these proposed changes... comment here, or email me or PM me at the forums or however you best like to add your pennies. I'd like to announce the finalized changes in August and implement them in September, I think, but I always love to hear what you think before I chisel things in stone.
In addition, note that September (which we are collecting for now) is the theme of PIRATES, and we are still on all the current guidelines: http://emg-zine.com/guidelines.php