As a result of my recent lament about writing markets for post-evangelicals, a few folk recommended starting a magazine. Having done this before, I can assure you it's a pain in the ass, and expensive. I've been thinking for years what a good magazine by Christians would look like. First some observations about other magazines, and then the magazine I'd like to see someone do.
Christianity Today. The flagship for evangelicals. Too centrist. Not risky enough. Downright pedestrian at times. Lately doing press releases for the Christian Right.
Books and Culture. Love it. Smart. Good analysis. A little heady at times. Not at all risky.
ReGeneration Quarterly. When it went out of business I knew good Christian magazines didn't have much of a chance.
The Other Side. Ditto.
Sojourners. Good social justice emphasis. Well-written. Narrow focus. Too political these days. And I'm tired of them asking for money.
Cornerstone. Too fundy. Great art, fiction, and poetry.
The Door. Funny. Good interviews. Great cartoons. No theology, except for Ole's column.
Christian Century. Smart. Good analysis. Written for professional clergy and religion professors, so the focus is too limited.
So, put all those together and you get a good idea of what I'd like to see: theologically risky, good interviews with people in and out of the Church, emphasis on art, music, fiction, and poetry, good creative non-fiction, two or three solid columnists (at least one of whom would speak prophetically), humor, especially satire, cartoons with an edge, Church and cultural analysis, movie reviews and analysis, a mix of high and low culture, critiques of movements and personalities in the Church, all written for college-educated or self-educated people. Shouldn't be a problem at all. What to call it? That's the problem.