Editor Kevin Hoffman and art director Nick Vlcek talk to the Society of Publication Designers about this week's cover design, which uses Sarah Palin's Going Rogue as source material for a cover story (titled "Going Crazy") on Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann. As we noted yesterday, Hoffman had said it was the first time in 30 years the paper had gone out without a logo on the cover; a decision that he and Vlcek say was a pretty easy one to come by. "We realized very quickly that in order to make the cover look as much like the book as possible, that we would have to forgo our logo," Hoffman says. "But it was worth it for the impact it would have on our readers."

At left, City Pages' 11/18 cover; at right, Sarah Palin's book cover.

Continue ReadingMore on City Pages’ Bachmann/Palin Mash-Up Cover

The Weekly's longtime art director and production manager Kevin Dougherty died at home on Oct. 21 of an apparent heart attack, the paper reports. He was 49 years old. Dougherty, who began working at the Weekly in 1994, became production manager in 1998 and also took over the art director position in 1999. In addition, he served on the executive committee that ran the paper. "Kevin was an amazing boss and coworker, a wonderful friend and an inspirational human being," says Weekly staffer Sarah Decker. "He knew how to make us laugh, and he sure knows how to make us weep. I will miss him every day of my life."

Continue ReadingEugene Weekly Art Director Dies

The Weekly has completely redesigned its website and launched a corresponding mobile application. Among the cool new features on the site are a local business guide, a local song of the day on the site jukebox and feeds from local blogs and local, state and national news sources. "[The site] will be a boon to our community, expanding our content and how our readers can obtain and interface with it," Weekly CEO Bradley Zeve says. "It offers more in every way -- more accessibility and more content." The site and the mobile app were both designed in-house by longtime Weekly staffer Kevin Smith, who says he's happy to roll out the project to the public. "Plus," he adds, "maybe now I can have time to read my kids a good-night story."

Continue ReadingMonterey County Weekly Redesigns Website, Launches Mobile App

The Reader, named for the Twin Cities alt-weekly that closed in 1997, is a local news aggregator being developed as a separate entity from the paper's Blotter blog. "This is it's own product, and it's meant to be a hub for finding the most important stories in the Twin Cities quickly," City Pages editor Kevin Hoffman tells AAN News in an email. "Whereas Blotter is highly voice driven, this is more like a map where the reader decides where to visit." The Reader apes the look of the notorious Drudge Report, a move Hoffman says was intentional. "The Drudge Report has long been the top national aggregator online, even for people who don't agree with Drudge's politics," he says. "We think that this is the format that people are used to for aggregators, and wanted to do something similar for local news."

Continue ReadingCity Pages Launches ‘Twin Cities Reader’

Noting that Los Angeles CityBeat was "pretty much birthed here in the offices of the Pasadena Weekly," Kevin Uhrich looks back at the life of his Southland Publishing sister paper, which folded last week. He also asks the obvious question: Could the same fate befall the Weekly? "I don't think so," he writes. "However, I can say with some certainty -- just by virtue of being on staff with one of the few papers still upright on a rapidly diminishing print media landscape -- that if that day ever comes, there will probably be no newspapers around anymore to note our passing."

Continue ReadingPasadena Weekly Editor Mourns ‘A Death in the Family’

"The cutback in cartoons has less to do with the budget than it does with page counts going down," Kevin Allman tells "Idiot Box" cartoonist Matt Bors. "What you see as $25 for a cartoon, the publishers see as potential ad space that could sell for 10x that amount." Allman says that in New Orleans, they ended up sticking with local cartoonists rather than nationally syndicated ones. "Their drawings are the equivalent of local news stories," he says. "And I try to treat them with as much respect as I do the columnists, but they have to suffer too with the smaller page layouts."

Continue ReadingGambit Weekly Editor Chats About the State of Alt-Weekly Cartoons