It might seem that a South African immigrant who ends up in Grapevine, Texas, with a degree in computer science; starts her own magazine because she wants to interact more with people; and hires her first writers from craigslist would have no problem believing that strange things can happen. But when Lumbie Mlambo got a call from somebody claiming AT&T wanted to buy ads in her fledging publication Equanimity, she hung up. It couldn’t be real, she thought.
“And then I called back,” she said at last night’s Literary Mingle meeting, “because I wanted to see if that number was really for AT&T.”
It was, and the people at the other end wanted to buy full-page ads after seeing the first edition of the magazine at a Women’s Expo in Dallas. The magazine’s first print run was 20,000 and was labeled “special edition” because Ms. Mlambo wasn’t sure there would be another. After the AT&T call, she knew there would be. And another, and another. Get the idea?
Originally without a model, cover girl-ready Ms. Mlambo put herself on the first edition with the help of local photographer David Goff. Now, she said, people call her to ask to be featured. Suze Orman is expected to grace the cover of a Financial Edition in the future. The magazine has been available at Barnes & Noble bookstores, but Ms. Mlambo, its chief editor, wants to move into wider venues. Expect to see it in supermarkets soon. But if you can’t wait to find it near the checkout counter, you’re welcome to subscribe at www.equanimitymag.com/
The magazine’s website statement markets it for both men and women. Some covers of the glossy quarterly, subtitled “balance your life,” have the look of an up-scale women’s magazine. Others look like a cross between Forbes and GQ, as when “Top 40 under 40” entrepreneur Jordan Wirsz and gentlemanly etiquette author Enitan Bereola shared the cover spot.
Both men epitomize Ms. Mlamblo’s motto of “discipline.” It’s the trait that moved her father, who wasn’t able to finish school, to work longer hours to be sure his children could learn. She wanted to start a magazine that people could learn from, she said. And it includes departments on topics such as fashion, self expression, and giving for a cause.
Even though I’m a frequent scanner of magazine racks, I might not have learned about Equanimity without the help of Kat Smith, whose Preface Entertainment sponsors The Muse Literary Mingle’s monthly get-togethers for people in the Dallas-Fort Worth literary community. For more information on Literary Mingle’s monthly programs, see www.preface-ent.com/