Judoka Quarterly: An International Judo Magazine
Judoka Quarterly: An International Judo Magazine
An English-language judo magazine featuring long-form articles and photo essays for both the casual judo fan and the judo fanatic!
An English-language judo magazine featuring long-form articles and photo essays for both the casual judo fan and the judo fanatic! Read more
What is Judoka Quarterly?
Judoka Quarterly is an international English-language judo magazine to be published four times a year. It will be sold and distributed through Amazon and will be available in both Kindle and print formats. This magazine will cover all facets of judo including international and Japanese domestic competitions, athlete profiles, interviews, kata, judo history, women’s issues and judo techniques. Judoka Quarterly is a production of JQ Media Japan incorporated.
Who is JQ Media Japan?
JQ Media Japan is David McFall and Rafal Burza. David has worked with the International Judo Federation as a commentator since 2010. During this time, he has done both color commentary and play-by-play at three World Championships as well as the Tokyo Grand Slam, the Paris Grand Slam and the World Cadets. An active judoka, David holds the rank of fourth dan and practices at the Kodokan, judo’s spiritual home. Rafal has traveled the globe, covering international judo competitions for over ten years as a photographer. Rafal's work has been featured in several judo publications and his pictures have graced the pages of the Kodokan’s annual calendar for the past few years.
Why an English language judo magazine?
A few years back, we were active participants in a judo internet forum. We made several life-long friends and thoroughly enjoyed the exchange of information about judo. We also realized that there was a hunger for entertaining, informative information about judo. Like many sports, judo is first and foremost about the people who practice it, the judoka. We see an opportunity to tell those stories in the lingua franca of our day, English. In addition, there is a treasure trove of Japanese language material on judo that is just begging to be translated and a magazine like ours would provide a great platform to make these materials available for the first time to an audience outside of Japan.
What are you funding?
JQ Media Japan has already gathered a small stable of writers, translators, researchers and historians from around the world. In the preview issue, we have contributors like Murata Naoki, Mike Callan and Jonathan Zwicker, as well as an interview with Ezio Gamba. We see a huge potential to deliver quality content that tells the story of judoka, the people who practice this rich martial art. We want to tell these stories utilizing the amazing media technology available today, Kindle and the internet. In addition, we also want to make the content available in print form for those want to hold something in their own hands. In order to achieve these aims, we need to hire professional designers for both the magazine and the website. The funds raised through this Kickstarter campaign will serve two purposes: 1) it will support the development of the website and cover magazine design costs for the first few issues and 2) it will demonstrate to advertisers that we have strong base of readers willing to back our magazine.
How far along are we?
The genesis of this project was a long train ride on the way to an international budo seminar two years ago. David spent hours hashing out ideas for a judo magazine project with the Alex Bennett, editor-in-chief of Kendo World magazine. Several conversations between Alex and David followed and the concept for Judoka Quarterly magazine was formed. From there, David approached Rafal, who he has known for several years from the International Judo Federation competition circuit and they started to gather content. In January 2014, we incorporated our company as JQ Media Japan. That spring, we contacted Patrick Hendricks, a fellow judoka from the Kodokan now living in Portland, and he helped us create a preliminary version of our website on WordPress to test some ideas. In addition, we approached several designers and got bids for an 80-page full color magazine for both Kindle and print formats. One of those designers, Jeff Girard of Surfer's Journal magazine, designed our logo. This past summer, in collaboration with Baptiste Tavernier from the design team at Kendo World, we published a preview issue to show potential advertisers. However, we realized that to make this publication a success, we needed to reach out to our future readership and make a more direct appeal.
Risks and challenges
The real challenge in putting together a magazine is getting regular content and meeting deadlines. As a quarterly publication we will have a little more flexibility than a monthly or bi-monthly publication. However, keeping our writers on deadline will be a tough. One way to deal with this is to focus on presenting articles in a series in order to get ahead of deadlines. For example, we could do a technique article exploring one of the kata in a series running over the span of several issues.
Publishing a print magazine is always a challenge in this day and age but I believe that with the Kindle edition and print-on-demand technology we can reach fans of both the new media and the classic print magazine form. Furthermore, using print-on-demand allows us to produce a hardcopy version without the need for warehousing old stock and it reduces mailing costs. We are also abandoning the subscription model in favor of selling individual issues. This works better with the Amazon store and allows us to have a lighter, more streamlined website. These modifications to the more familiar subscription based print magazine business model will improve our chances for success.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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