Behind the Scenes
Behind the Scenes: Julia Horel, Publisher
My first month as publisher of Shameless has been more than a whirlwind – it’s been a tornado of activity. Who would take on a major transition of a web team and business team at exactly the same time as a complete re-launch of a website? Shameless would, obviously. And what’s more, we would take it on and knock it out of the park, because that’s the kind of thing we do.
The condensed list of things I’ve been working on over the past couple of months, as I’ve transitioned from web director to publisher, looks something like this:
Wrap up work on existing website. Contact bloggers to inform them of changes. Help to plan new website launch project. Business meetings. Help new blog editing team to make work plans. Training sessions with outgoing publisher. Editorial meetings. Collect most of Shameless stockpile of back issues, merch, banner, binders, notes, receipts, miscellany. (Stack stockpile in basement. Feel grateful for tolerant partner.) Board meeting. Bank meeting. Ad sales. Help to plan a launch party. Gather materials for website relaunch. Book tables at International Women’s Day Fair and Word on the Street (see you there?). Requisition two desk drawers for file folders, bankbooks and other records. (Still grateful for tolerant partner.) Make plans for fundraising. Delegate and ask for help. Feel utter thrill and appreciation.
It seems like a lot when I write it out, and it is. It won’t always be this hectic, because we won’t normally be re-launching a website and finding our feet with a new publishing team and training a new blog staff and going about our day-to-day work producing our amazing magazine. But most of the things on that list are necessary to keep things running, not to mention growing and expanding and finding new ways to reach more readers and community members.
The fact that we’ve been able to keep up with this chaotic time confirms to me what I’ve always known about Shameless: as a community, we can do anything we choose to take on. I’ve felt busy and even a touch overwhelmed at times during this first month as publisher, no doubt, but I’ve always felt supported. We have been doing this work for ten years, unfunded, through our donated labour and connections and resources and our complete, utter love for our work and for each other. Knowing we’ve done all this, we imagine the most incredible possibilities with funding support from donors and granting agencies – goals as humble as have office space and paying our staff and contributors and as pie-in-the-sky as huge community events and more. The best is yet to come, and I hope you’ll come enjoy the ride with us.