From The Founders

Column by Seth Casana & Stephen Graham
Issue 71 • January 2019 • Fredericksburg

It can’t be repeated often enough: Seven years ago, when we first conceived of what would become Whurk Magazine, we didn’t know if there would be more than one issue. Certainly, there was no shortage of people who thought we wouldn’t even make it that far. We had no funding, no investors, no major advertisers, and no existing model to emulate. It took a year of planning, prototyping, and promoting, but in March 2013, the first issue of Whurk rolled off the presses. We still didn’t know exactly what we had gotten ourselves into, but at least we could point to something concrete and say, there, that is what this is all about.

In the years following, as we expanded the scope of Whurk’s mission and grew the organization, it was our top priority to maintain that eccentric spark that first ignited our imaginations. Whurk is all about Virginia’s vibrant cultural community, and the magazine itself needed to exemplify the best parts of that creative spirit. It hasn’t always been easy to balance the demands of our monthly production schedule while pushing those creative boundaries, but for the past 70 issues, that is what has set us apart. Whether it was a citywide year-long treasure hunt, bizarrely irreverent crossword puzzles, pull-out posters featuring Richmond’s mayor, or an entirely blank cover save for a handwritten sticky note, we hope that each issue of Whurk has provided you, dear reader, with ample opportunity to expand your mind while appreciating the artistic output of Virginia.

It is on that note that we must announce that this will be the last scheduled issue of Whurk Magazine for the foreseeable future. For some time now, it has been clear to us that our lives are dramatically different than when we first founded Whurk. But despite our best efforts over the past several years, we have yet to successfully transition to a sustainable production model that respects those changes. At this point, we don’t have any other viable options but to step back and regroup. It is not a decision that has been made lightly, but it is one that is necessary.

If you need a name for the current state of Whurk, call it hibernation mode. It’s difficult for us not to think about how to make Whurk better, so we’re still going to be doing it, whether or not we’re actively publishing. We also love to share those ideas with like-minded folks, so please, get in touch with us if you want to hear more. We’re happy to listen if you think there’s an angle that we haven’t considered.

For the first year or so of the magazine, we would host cocktail parties to celebrate the release of each new issue of Whurk. In honor of that tradition, a final Whurk Release Party will be held on Sunday, January 13 Sunday, January 20 (rescheduled due to inclement weather) from 7–9 PM at Kybecca (400 William Street, Fredericksburg). We invite you to raise a glass with the Whurk team in honor of the closing of this chapter of the publication.

Thanks for picking up what we’ve been putting down all these years, it has meant everything.

Seth Casana & Stephen Graham
Founders of Whurk Magazine

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