The Words, November 2013

Tempered Magazine: Connecting the Post-Mac Community

Rudy Henriquez ‘14

What happens when Macalester students leave the inspirational environment of campus? Most get jobs or go to grad school in cities across the United States, but they never lose the insatiable urge to be creative. For the founders of the new literary magazine Tempered Magazine, this urge manifests itself in the desire to keep their alumni community connected through the art of the literature. Tempered Magazine is the creation of Macalester alums Kate Ryan Reiling ('00), Matea Wasend ( '12), Sarah Marsh Olson (’05), Jonathan Hulland (’01), Jay Guerrero (’01), and Lauryn Gutierrez (’12). Their bi-annual online periodical publishes the work of recent and older Macalester Alumni.

All it took was one former Macalester student thinking about tightly linked communities at Macalester for the idea of Tempered Magazine to come about. As co-founder Matea Wasend (’12) explains,

“Tempered was Kate's idea, though it wasn't born under that name. She was thinking about how connected the Macalester arts community is when you're at school...After school everybody spreads out, and it's harder to keep track of all the amazing, creative work that Mac grads are doing. And she thought, wouldn't it be great if there was one place to collect some of those creative endeavors?”

In this way, Tempered Magazine’s creation is rooted in the same philosophies that have spawned the phenomenon of social media. It is the need to remain connected that drives us to Facebook and Twitter, just as it will be the need to remain connected that will encourage Macalester alums to subscribe and contribute to Tempered Magazine. As Wasend (’12) says, “We envision Tempered as a kind of meeting place. I like to think of it like a little creative reunion.”

Tempered Magazine has already faced some hurdles in the process of starting up their publication. The geographical distance between each staff member has presented a major communication issue. Luckily for Tempered Magazine, the problem of a disconnected Macalester alumni group is exactly the dilemma that inspired the creation of the magazine. Instead, Wasend (’12) worries that the magazine’s greatest hurdle is not the geographical distance of its staff members, but rather “getting people to submit, which I suspect is the challenge that every lit magazine faces,” she said.

Procedural issues are easier to overcome when you receive positive feedback and succor from a community. Wasend ('12) has so far been encouraged with support from the Macalester community.

“People seem to ‘get’ this idea right away. We've had a great initial response from everyone we've reached out to about this, and it showed in our signup numbers--more than 100 in the first week. The English department has been especially supportive, for which we're really grateful.”

Considering the supportive nature of the typical Macalester student and alum, this type of support will likely continue. In terms of the future of the magazine itself, Wasend (’12) knows the future will be unpredictable.

“I have a feeling Tempered is going to evolve and take us to unexpected places, and I'm okay with that. I think we're all okay with that. I just hope it can be a place for Mac grads of all ages and pursuits to connect in some way.”

If you are a current Macalester student you can subscribe to the magazine on their website at: www.temperedmag.com. The deadline for the first submission to Tempered Magazine is November 15, 2013 (for Macalester Alumni only).