It hits you when you least expect it. When your life is all set and is on a well treaded path to economic independence and predictable success. When you are about to take off and vault to the pinnacle of your profession. When you think that nothing can go wrong. No, not think. You know that nothing can go wrong. And it hits you. At the time when you least expect it.
I am talking about a random bout of inspiration. Let me give an example to drive home the point. I tagged along with a friend to Levo. Levo is one of those fancy places where heiresses of princely estates, ameer baap ki bigdi daughters, trophy housewives et al go for haircuts and pedicures and manicures and what not. Of course I have nothing to do with a place like that and people like that but this friend of mine wanted to change her hairstyle and I was asked to tag along. So my life was all fine. You know dull and boring and predictable in the MBA-rising-through-the-corporate-ladder way and suddenly one day I find myself standing outside Levo.
While she was getting her hair done, I had about an hour to kill. And Levo had this fancy magazine rack. The top few shelves had Vogues etc of the world. But the bottom shelf had xBHP, Suburb and Platform. And every turn of the page on each of the magazine, I went wow. Lemme take them one at a time.
Suburb is this magazine that is published out of Gurgaon and is aimed at expat community in Gurgaon. Since Gurgaon is a major hub for multinationals, there are tons of expats. Here for both short durations and longer stays. The content, the editorial notes and other material was very average from a niche magazines perspective but they made a good effort to appeal to their audience. Most of their content was clichéd and boring for an Indian but I am sure most expats wouldnt have known those things and would read Suburb religiously. Here, on our hands, we have this bunch of people who are intelligent and enterpriding enough to find a niche audience that is large enough. And they have been supplying them with dope they want. Amazing!
Next up is this magazine called Platform. A typical publication for Page 3 celebs. It proclaims that it talks about Art, Design, Fashion, Words, Music and Films. Everything that gets attention of the media savvy kinds. Apart from showcasing fashion designers, it did talk about art directors, writers, photographers and other creative kinds. I think its an awesome initiative to showcase people and their work. Apart from established professionals, there were tons of snippets about upcoming artists/creatives/talents. The content reflected a very strong editor at helm of affairs. And a lot of connections and purani dosti as play. Mightly impressed by them. If it wasnt Rs. 150 per copy, I would have subscribed to it.
And last, and the best, xBHP. As a kid I remember spending hours on the xBHP forum and ogling over bikers, their machines, their rides, their lifestyles and their babes. Seeing them in print was a pleasant surprise. And that too 250 GSM paper, gloss finish, thick 200 page magazine. Beat that shit guys. I made a few phone calls to a few friends still crazy about bikes and I was told that the guys at xBHP work with auto magazines and in the words of Green Day, they are having time of their lives.
Anyways, coming back to the post, random bout of inspiration, so this visit to a spa in Gurgaon is that random bout that I am most scared about. Something in me is now itching to get into the publishing business and start a magazine. And the question that I have from myself is ... do I or do I not scratch that itch.
P.S.: Another post on what it takes to start and run a magazine business. Coming Soon. In 2015 ;P