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Letter

from the

Editor

Dan Mathers shares some personal insight into this month’s theme

Since May of 2013, every issue of The WC Press has had a theme around which it’s built. Having recently planned out the entirety of 2020, that means we’ve now selected 104 of them. Of course, some of those repeat. After the popularity of our first food issue back in May of 2013, we’ve published one every year since. We also launched our first “Summer Fun Guide” back in 2013 (although it was titled “53 Reasons NOT to go to the Beach this Summer”) and have made that an annual occurrence, too. The same goes for our “Holiday Shopping Guide.” For a while there we also recycled “fashion” or “style” every 12 months, and we’ve printed a handful of animal-, alcohol-, wellness-, and wedding-related mags, too. Which brings me to this month: “Locally Made.” While we haven’t technically done it before, for all intents and purposes it’s the third iteration of this issue, following “Made in America” in 2013 and “Homemade” in 2017. Luckily for us, talking about locally produced products in West Chester is like drinking from a well that never dries. We live in a town that’s small in terms of population but loaded with ingenuity and entrepreneurial spirit. Every time we touch on this motif, we examine new, thriving businesses, and thanks to our 220-year history (and the Chester County Historical Society), there’s a treasure trove of memorable ventures from our past. The reality is that these are all secondary subjects; the central premise in each The WC Press is simply “think local.” Whenever I’m asked about how this magazine finds success when other print models are failing, I credit our community ties. Huge operations may cover large swathes of the country, but they never generate the same kind of engagement with readers as something published in their own backyard. It’s a sentiment with which I think many of the business owners we feature this month would agree, and it’s why we’ve always stood firmly by the guiding principle that any article we write has to have a direct connection to 19380 or 19382. While digging through our archives in the course of fact-checking for this piece, I re-read my first “Letter from the Editor.” It set out to explain what our earliest readers were holding and to establish the ethic around which all future publications would be built. Honestly, it was a bit embarrassing for me to revisit. I found the piece full of mistakes I’ve since chided employees about, silly slipups like constant word repetition. And yet, while I hope my writing has improved in the interim, I’ve always maintained that effective prose is that which conveys a clear message, and my first column certainly did just that. It may have only been two short paragraphs, but my inaugural “Letter from the Editor” included the word “local” three times. As much as I may look back and wish the 25-year-old version of myself had been more willing to consult a thesaurus, maybe it wasn’t so bad that I defined the essential theme of this publication early and, apparently, often. —dan@thewcpress.com

SEPTEMBER 2019 THEWCPRESS.COM

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Profile for The WC Press

The WC Press Locally Made Issue - September 2019  

Voice of the Borough

The WC Press Locally Made Issue - September 2019  

Voice of the Borough