The Magazinist
Critical Thinking for Publishers
About Us

The Internet is a wonderful place to stash things.  The Magazinist is our attic in the cloud, full of well used tools, musings and clippings, and dusty scrapbooks with great stories from publishing history.  The theme to the jumble is periodical publishing, a craft we suspect will be as lively a century from now as it was a century ago.  Thanks for stopping by!

What We Think

Magazines draw together communities of people who share a common interest and want to read about it in print.  A well-executed magazine reflects the passions of its readers, and its readers respond to the passion of its content.  

 Magazines are a unique reflection of their times, and a unique reflection of human nature.  

 We think there are factors of magazine success often taken for granted but seldom examined... and that's where human nature comes in.  For example...

 -Print has unique value that we rarely consider consciously.

-The real competition in publishing is for the reader's time.

-Being smart is a competitive advantage.

-Novelty fades fast.

-The right tools deliver better work.

- Markets trump pundits every time.

 And last but not least, we think history is a great teacher… and the best guide to the future.


We take our motto from Roger L’Estrange, royal licensor of the press.  He wrote in 1663, “…A Publick Mercury should never have My Vote ; because I think it makes the Multitude too Familiar with the Actions, and Counsels of their Superiors ; too Pragmaticall and Censorious, and gives them, not only an Itch, but a kind of Colourable Right and License, to be Meddling with Government.”

About the Publisher


Peter Hutchinson is a media professional with more than 30 years of experience in the publishing industry.  He’s held executive positions at many of America's leading publishers, among them CMP Media, IDG, McGraw-Hill, and Miller Freeman.   

Hutchinson has managed magazines and online properties in the software, music, and information technology markets.  He’s also managed three book publishing imprints, a custom publishing operation, several trade shows, and several Web-based businesses.  He’s successfully directed nine major launches and numerous acquisitions.  

Hutchinson is vice president of sales and marketing at a rapidly-growing startup.


From time to time he also consults on marketing services, sales training, audience development, and strategic planning.  His recent clients include city and regional magazines, trade publishers, magazines and Web sites in the IT market, software publishers, a book publisher, and two television and radio stations. 

Hutchinson has taught at UC Berkeley, worked with the Stanford Publishing Courses, spoken at the Folio: conferences, and served on the board of directors of the Western Publications Association.  He has a special interest in the history of American magazine publishing, and how the lessons of history can be applied to the opportunities of publishing in the Internet Age. 

More about consulting services.

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