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Tablet #103 - The Music Issue

A Letter From Us

After writing countless introductory letters I find myself in the unenviable position of writing the final one. Publishing a culture magazine for the Pacific Northwest for the last few years has been the most exciting, frustrating, and rewarding experience of my life. Unfortunately, it has not proved as financially secure a venture as publishing needs to be to thrive and so we have decided to pull the plug. It was not an easy decision but I feel that what we were able to accomplish in five years (we launched in October 2000) has been extraordinary. Against oftentimes fierce competition and tough economic times, we have published on schedule for many years while other publications have come and gone.


In those five years we have published countless essays, interviews, columns and articles by some of the best writers around. Same too with our artists and photographers whose work has made this such an outstanding publication. Our brilliant cover artists were internationally known and local up-and-comers. Put all those elements together and we have what I think was a great magazine; something I feel is unrivalled in the Pacific Northwest. We made many mistakes but we learned from them. Others may have been glossy and spelling error-free, but I always felt (and still do) that our magazine was unique in its DIY spirit, its never-ending attempt to provide smarter coverage, and in its goal of providing a voice to underrepresented people, communities and cultures, without the snark that makes so many in independent media feel hip.

Celebrating five years of publishing would be impossible without the inspiring and tenacious early-years work of three people: Beth Fell, Cari Simson and Cheryl Ediss. Thanks to them for all they did to get us going and their undying support ever since moving on. Thanks also to the amazing staff and contributors that have been with us, most of whom for many years. I have worked countless paying jobs where the staff doesn’t stay on as long or work as hard as these people have. It truly has been a labor of love, a product born of a sincere passion for independent media, Northwest culture, and the chance to build something from the ground up. To them, I am sorry we could not make it longer, but I also know we would not have made it half this far without you.

The biggest praise I have is for my co-publishers. They are genuinely amazing people whose tireless work lifted me when I was burnt out, inspired me when I was out of ideas, kept me laughing when the bills piled up, and kept me drunk far longer than was necessary. Forgive me for getting too personal or sentimental, but I must call them out. Dan, you were the rock upon which this magazine lasted. Sarah, you were the heart behind the whole mission. De, you were the creative genius who kept us excited about every next step. In this city, there aren’t three other people with the integrity, smarts and creativity that you all have in spades. I am honored to have worked with each of you and look forward to whatever future projects we can dream up (preferably really profitable ones).

Finally, thanks to all our readers and advertisers. We worked hard each month to bring a better magazine than we brought the month before and we hope that showed. We started with a few hundred bucks and a handful of advertisers and turned it into five kick-ass years. Now our biggest hope is with you. Because we want to see what you can do. Start up your own magazine, newspaper, or zine. This city should be big enough to support more than one decent publication, so we’re counting on you to deliver. Make it good, make it sloppy... make it whatever the hell you want, just make it. God knows that if we could do it, then you can too.

Eric Hildebrandt
Publication Director

All content of Tablet is © 2005 by Tablet, LLC and may not be reprinted without expressed written permission.