Back in September, publisher Ken Villalovos abandoned THE magazine because, as he said at the time, the Santa Fe parent company hadn’t paid him or editor Scot Hart — even after they took pay cuts to keep the 11-month-old, North Texas arts publication going. “It was getting to the point where our reputations were on the line,” he said — and quite a few local writers and photographers were left in the financial lurch as well.
Now Villalovos has returned with another monthly periodical, Arts+Culture magazine — or A and C for short. The website isn’t fully functioning yet, but the premiere issue is out. The format is certainly familiar — big, colorful and clean newsprint with lots of white space but also full of ads from local galleries and eateries — and some of the local contributors are familiar names as well — Karen Almond, Chris Shull, Mark Lowry, Charissa Terranova.
“To take all the romance out of it,” Villalovos says, ” we couldn’t continue without community support — and that means advertising. But it was like we were here for 11 months, and then gone for one month, and people realized, ‘Hey, we can’t let this happen. We need this.’ It made it an easy decision for us to make. Scot and I felt that only if everyone is really passionate, then we’ll take this thing and run with it. And we are.”
As for the writers, Villalovos said, “We told them, ‘We understand. You lost money, we lost money.’ And we want to be on a good footing with them. So we agreed to pre-pay [for their contributions] for the first issue and pre-pay for the second issue. After that, we’ll work out an agreement. But everyone single writer we went to came on board.”