PPA Scotland Magazine Stories
Advice and anecdotes from the stars of the magazine industry
Have you ever wondered how the country’s top magazine professionals got to where they are today?PPA Scotland’s Magazine Stories is an interview series in which we talk to the stars of the magazine industry.Whether you wa
The Big Issue's Managing Editor: Vicky Carroll
Season 1, Ep. 6
The Big Issue has been rightly lauded for its response to the coronavirus crisis. As a publication sold on the street, they were immediately badly hit by social distancing. But they have found new ways to reach their audience and support their vendors, all of whom are facing social exclusion.For the last podcast in this first series of Magazine Stories, we're joined by The Big Issue's Managing Editor, Vicky Carroll. We discuss what the magazine has done to keep going in these tough times, as well as taking a trip through her 30 years in journalism.Vicky has been part of The Big Issue's award-winning team for 12 years. In this interview she tells us about the profound impact that the magazine has had on her, as well as looking back on a career that includes groundbreaking work for the NME, managing major partnerships for the Evening Times… and lots and lots of live music.
The Skinny's Editor-in-Chief: Rosamund West
Season 1, Ep. 5
Rosamund West has been the Editor of The Skinny for more than 10 years. She took over the magazine with a clear goal of establishing its reputation as a leading cultural voice in Scotland, and for the penultimate episode of this series of Magazine Stories she tells us how she went about doing that.The Skinny is a vital launching pad for talent, with alumni finding their way into many other publications and arts organisations, so she has a great insight into the attributes that mark individuals out as 'ones to watch'. She shares some top advice with us.She also candidly discusses the challenges The Skinny is facing as the coronavirus crisis hits the events and cultural sectors. Rosamund's passion for magazines, and their ability to "sell you worlds", is compelling.
PPA's outgoing Chief Executive: Barry McIlheney
Season 1, Ep. 4
For this edition of Magazine Stories, we were very lucky to get some time with PPA’s Chief Executive, Barry McIlheney, in the last week of his ten-year stint in that role. He explains how the PPA has been supporting the magazine industry over the last decade, and particularly in the face of the coronavirus pandemic.Barry has a truly enviable career. He edited Smash Hits; launched Empire, heat and the French edition of FHM; and he held a series of senior management posts at EMAP. In a reflection of Barry’s many-storied life, our interview features the Oscars red carpet, editing advice from Warren Beatty, and the time a design decision enraged David Bowie.As he points out, Barry has come a long way from his origins in North Belfast.
Think's Executive Director: John Innes
Season 1, Ep. 3
Currently the acclaimed Executive Director of Think, John Innes has been publishing magazines since primary school. His incredibly varied career runs the gamut from Sunday School publications to launching the controversial and risqué Bizarre magazine.Along the way he learned from some of the greats of publishing - including John Brown, the founder of John Brown Media - and has discovered that film magazines aren't as glamorous as they seem.John now leads Think's Glasgow team producing magazines and other content for the likes of Historic Scotland, and the National Trust for Scotland.In this episode of Magazine Stories, he talks us through the lessons he's learned along the way.
Holyrood Communications' MD: Mandy Rhodes
Season 1, Ep. 2
For this edition we’re very lucky to be joined by multiple award-winning Mandy Rhodes, the managing director of Holyrood Communications and the editor of its flagship title Holyrood magazine.She talks to us about what she’s learned in more than 30 years in media across magazines, newspapers, television and radio broadcasting. She explains about what's changed in the industry in that time - as well as the key skills that have remained the same. And she emphasises how much privilege she feels in doing her job - even if there have been occasions when she's feared for her life.
DC Thomson Media's Head of Podcasting: Chris Phin
Season 1, Ep. 1
Appropriately for our first podcast edition of Magazine Stories, we travelled to Dundee (before the lockdown) to speak to one of the leading figures driving publishers' pivot to audio. DC Thomson Media's Chris Phin is a passionate advocate for the medium, as a means to get closer to your audience and to engage with younger demographics.He tells us how he's gone from geeky beginnings to a groundbreaking senior role within Scotland's biggest publisher, via editing roles at tech titles, freelance writing and consulting, and publishing the award-winning Scottish Wedding Directory.Along the way, he is generous with his advice for navigating a magazine media career - as well as his tips for would-be podcasters. They can be "quick, easy and deliverable", he insists.We also caught up with Chris again last week to find out how the coronavirus crisis has affected his team, and our listening habits.