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a mutineer to revere Print
Written by Nikitas Magel   

Mutineer 4 NM:  On the subject of Old vs. New media and journalism, I wonder if Mutineer Magazine could actually be considered a link between the two.  On the one hand you're reaching out to a younger audience and acknowledging the newer tools and resources that this demographic fully embraces, but on the other hand you're lending a sense of legitimacy and something more substantive that's along the lines of traditional wine and beverage journalism.  Would you agree that what you're doing really is bridging the old and the new?

AK:  I would hope that we're taking the best of the old, the bits and pieces that people are really inspired by, and then building on that.  Our journalistic approach is that we really don't care how experienced you are as a writer, as long as you can write.  We actually prefer less experienced writers.  We want people who are excited and who know what they're writing about.  And more often than not, the people who know the most about these subjects aren't writers; rather, they're people who actually do these jobs — like winemakers or coffee baristas who have an interest in writing.  Those folks have the best stories to tell and those stories are things that transcend the gap in ages.  I think the things that maybe make us young and hip are the adjectives that we use (you'll see words like 'awesome' and 'cool' appear in our magazine) and the fact that we reference cultural icons (films like The Big Lebowski or famous Hollywood bar fights).  But we've had a great response from people of all ages even though we push it towards the younger folks.

NM:  To what extent is the content in Mutineer written by a core group of staff writers versus a wide and changing distribution of freelance or guest writers?

AK:  In a perfect world, I'd be completely happy just writing the Letter from the Editor and maybe one wine feature.  But we're still getting to that place, so right now I'm writing a couple of more articles than I think I'd prefer to.  I'm happy to do it and I love having the practice and the opportunity to tell these stories, but in a perfect world I'd love to be writing just one story per issue and really giving people out there, who are inspired to write, the opportunity to share their ideas through our magazine.  With every new issue we have more and more contributors, as we become more efficient and we learn how to work with writers and find people that are able to give us what we're looking for.

NM:  Do you have an ideal style or type of writer whom you see as the best fit for your magazine?

AK:  Certainly!  You've got to be inspired and passionate, you have to write in complete sentences, you can't get us sued, and your article submissions have to be something that people want to read.  If a writer meets those criteria, I'm interested in talking with them to see what they've got!

NM:  One major development for you is that you're soon to be distributed nationally.  Congratulations!  Can you tell me what went into getting to that step and what you think it will mean for you in the future?

AK:  Yeah, that's certainly great news for us.  We got picked up by the largest distributor in America.  We had actually gotten a couple of offers and so were in the fortunate position to be able to choose one.  We're looking at Issue 5 [which comes out in April] to be distributed nationally.  We're getting some very exciting placements, and we're excited to see the response that we get and what happens when this thing becomes available on a large scale.

NM:  In light of these recent development, where would you like to see Mutineer Magazine in the next few years?

AK:  I'd like to see the magazine simply existing as a successful business, first and foremost.  We're still in that startup stage, working 16 hours a day, so I'd like to see it get to a place where it's taking care of itself and we have more ambitious support for it.  But out in the community, I'd like to see this as something the industry trusts; I'd like to build that credibility with the industry we serve and build that relationship.  When [people in the beverage industry] have a story that they want to share, I want them to pick up the phone to call me or send me an email, and say "We really want Mutineer to the be place that we tell this story, that we share this news with the world."  If we can accomplish that, I'm a happy guy and I think we've reached our goal.



 

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