David Hepworth is a writer, broadcaster and editor who has worked on titles including NME, Smash Hits, Just Seventeen, Q, Empire, Mojo, More, Heat and The Word.
I like the idea of working with people who combine specialist knowledge of a subject with an interest in the best way of communicating with people who share that knowledge.
All the people I’ve worked with, from Smash Hits through to The Word, have wanted to do both whereas most journalists can only do the former.
In the present time, when the means of communication are changing all the time, that’s more challenging and interesting than ever.
But mainly I like magazines because that’s what I fell into doing in 1978 when I was out of work, rang Nick Logan and he said, can you come in tomorrow?
My proudest moment was the launch of Just Seventeen back in 1983.
We’d never done anything like it before. We didn’t even know enough to realise it was supposed to be difficult.
Two weeks after it launched I was in a goods lift with the publisher and he said, it’ll make a million pounds this year. I can remember thinking, oh, we can do this.
Other than that I’m proud of the fact that I’m quick.
I have no patience with people who spend hours telling you they’ve got no time.
My advice to writers is the same as PG Wodehouse’s: “First apply the seat of the trousers to the surface of the chair.” If you’re asked to do something the only answer is yes.
I read newspapers on the iPad in bed.
I also listen to Radio Five or Four in the kitchen, football podcasts on the way to work, news magazines on Kindle and on paper, TV on iPlayer or DVD, Vanity Fair while waiting for the kettle to boil, the whole of the New Yorker every week.
Most of the TV that people talk about I never see. TV is a machine for making us more stupid.
Never buy weekend papers. They’re designed to spoil your weekend. I read an awful lot of books. Is that media?
I’m agnostic about magazine apps on the iPad. The iPad is a brilliant toy for looking at the internet. As soon as I find myself in the walled garden of a magazine app I want to jump over that wall.
I’ve tried a whole lot and I’ve never gone back to any of them. I’m sure someone will find a way to make one work but in the meantime a lot of developers will be fleecing a lot of publishers.
In the words of Bob Dylan, I’ve got a headful of ideas that are driving me insane and this is a way to scratch that itch.
Blogging is personal, which is a great release for people who’ve spent most of their professional lives hiding behind brands. I can’t believe that every journalist doesn’t do it. It’s also, oddly enough, a shop window. I write short things for the blog and increasingly I get contacted by papers or magazines asking me if I can work an item up for a feature. I will write for food.
I don’t have any New Year’s resolutions.
I gave up smoking 28 years ago and so that was the end of self denial for me.