I'm gradually knocking the home studio into shape. This weekend's big job was to trim the fat from my magazine collection – something I've been putting off for a long time. Magazines are like crack to those of us suckered by collections of matching, uniform things (I believe the medical term for this condition is mustbuyeverypelicanbookosis), so it took some cold hard logic to rationalise what had to stay and what had to go.
My collection of The Believer? I only really kept them for the beautiful Charles Burns covers, but I still haven't read his book Black Hole, so I could still get my fix from that. And what about Esquire? It's been yo-yoing between amazing and terrible in the last couple of years – but I have a hardback edition of the September 2009 issue, so that'll serve as a good keepsake of the good times, before it resorted to Watch Adverts And Boobs Monthly.
And what about The Face? I whimpered over getting rid of loads a couple of years ago, so I'm keeping hold of those I've still got. Especially my replica issue one. It continues to baffle me that nobsody has published a retrospective of The Face. That's odd, isn't it? Yes it is.
Little White Lies and Port weren't going anywhere. No way. Not today, buddy-boy. Uh-uh.
The real toughie was Creative Review. Ten years' worth of square lovelies. How could I possibly get rid of any? And then I started flicking through them and realised there was little reason to keep them. It's a great mag, but it's very current, and all the good stuff is on their website anyway. Plus I lost my temper looking through them because of their insistence on having one page of heavier stock in the classifieds bit – preventing a satisfying flick-through. So after far too long mulling over whether I could perhaps keep one issue from each year, I realised that the logical thing was to keep each of the annuals. And you know what? It works a treat. The spines look rather lovely together, still satisfying my need to keep an uninterrupted series. And I still have a good snapshot of the last decade of design.
I've managed to trim my magazines down to two compartments of my standard-issue Ikea Expedit unit (aka my Vitsoe Shelf Placeholder Unit). This was a slightly heart-breaking exercise, but one that had to be done, otherwise it'd only be a matter of time before I turn into one of those people surrounded by boxes of archived newspapers and cereal boxes and hair.
So, how do you manage your magazine collection? And be honest, when was the last time you actually looked at that twenty year-old issue of Arena? Do you really need it?