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Art Director, Photo Editor, Designer: Jason Mahokey
Photographer: Jason Mahokey
Note: Content for The Daily Edit is found on the newsstands. Submissions are not accepted.
Heidi: What made you want to self publish an online and print endurance mountain bike magazine?
Jason: It was pretty selfish really – there wasn’t one and I wanted to read one. I’ve been a mid-pack-at-best amateur mountain bike racer for about ten years and I’ve always loved magazines, especially bike magazines. But no mountain bike magazine was covering endurance racing and riding the way I wanted. I wanted race recaps that were more than blurbs sandwiched between ads. I wanted recaps and stories that went beyond who beat whom and by how much. I wanted personal accounts of the pain, emotion, humor and craziness that comes along with endurance mountain bike racing and epic rides.
What are the visual challenges you have with this project?
Beyond the challenges of being the mag’s publisher, art director and sales rep, along with contributing articles and photos, each issue of XXC has the challenge of tracking down photos that are the quality I’m looking for, of the racers I am looking for and that are available at a price I can afford. As you can imagine not many folks racing a 100 mile race are carrying a camera with them and taking shots while they race, so I need to rely on both pro and amateur photographers that may have been shooting the race. Of course I have received some incredible point and shoot shots over the years from contributors doing races like The Colorado Trail Race, The Tour Divide, etc.
What is your distribution like and how do you hope to grow?
Right now the magazine is available in three formats: free online viewing on xxcmag.com, paid digital download and print via MagCloud.com. The free version gets the most views and often gets up to 4,000+ reads. The paid print and digital version get one to two hundred per issue. Exact numbers are hard to track as the magazine really has an endless shelf life and back issues can continue to be viewed and purchased long after the publication date.
I would love to get the magazine on a solid publishing schedule and be able to have issues printed in bulk that could be sold in bike shops and other retail outlets. Being that 95% of the magazine’s articles are submitted by readers, I am never 100% sure how much content I’ll have for a given issue, so the publication schedule continues to be very much written in sand. Beyond the print and digital magazine in 2012 I have plans to introduce more content in the form of podcasts and video coverage to the website, but not at the risk of the magazine’s quality.