Long-time Santa Monica resident David Wright, the publisher of Singular magazine, is on a mission. His new publication, aimed at people who are single by choice, seeks to remove the many negative connotations to those for whom marriage is not their choice of lifestyle, and give those individuals a sense of the many possibilities open to them.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, unmarried adults now head about half of the households in the nation. “It’s time to acknowledge a major shift in our culture, with more and more Americans now choosing to remain single well into adulthood, or who become divorced or widowed, such that unmarried adults in Los Angeles now represent over half of the population. We are very excited to build a community through our magazine, our website, and local events in a way that speaks to and about successful ‘singulars’ in a positive way,” says Wright, by way of explaining his vision for Singular.
An entrepreneur with an investment management background, Wright created and self-funded Singular specifically to appeal to Los Angeles’s fast-growing demographic of affluent, unmarried adults with household incomes over $100,000. A bi-monthly publication, Singular’s first issue hit the newsstands, as well as high-visibility retail outlets such as Barnes & Noble, Borders Books, and the Virgin Mega Store in Hollywood, in September. The slick glossy was also direct-mailed to 63,000 homes within a 14-mile radius of Santa Monica. These households combine for an astonishing net worth of over $17 billion, and many high-end advertisers, such as Jaguar Motor Cars, have already jumped on board. Other advertisers include cruise lines, adventure travel, designer clothing manufacturers, and various trendy beauty products and services – all of which ostensibly appeal to 30- to 55-year-olds with money. The magazine already has a higher circulation than Angelino and 944, and according to Wright, the initial response has been extremely positive. Future plans include “regionalizing” the publication in other major markets across the country.
Singular’s main target demographic includes anyone in their target age group who is unmarried, whether in a relationship or not. The basic tenets of Singular’s philosophy are:
1. To remove the stigma of awkwardness and embarrassment from unmarried people.
2. To show that singles can live lives that are as happy and fulfilled as those who are married.
Wright and his partner, journalist Kim Calvert, who serves as editor and CEO, launched Singular Communications, the magazine’s parent company. “I’m single and I have a great life filled with adventure and great friends,” says Calvert. “I got tired of people telling me I couldn’t be truly happy or successful if I wasn’t married, and throughout this process I realized I wasn’t alone. The goal of Singular is to serve like-minded single people who have active social lives and are comfortable with their single lifestyle. And we’re also here to assure people who are newly single, or think they can’t be single and happy, that it’s possible to redefine themselves in a positive way,” she added.
Like any good publisher, Wright realizes that what keeps readers coming back is not just a slick presentation, but first-rate writing. Singular’s initial editorial offerings include the cover story: “Myth of the Perfect Catch” written by Edward Lewine, a frequent contributor to Details, the New York Times and Glamour; columns from writers with a strong bead on single life, such as Leslie Talbot (author of Singular Existence – Because It’s Better to Be Alone Than to Wish You Were), Casey Green (author of a dozen books and often quoted in the New York Times, the Washington Post and Los Angeles Times), and Caroline Ryder, style editor for Variety.com. Other features cover food, grooming, wellness, and travel – all geared toward single people in their peak earning years. Each issue also features a SingularCity calendar with hot tips on where to go and what to do – on your own, on a date, or with friends.
The magazine business is both intensely competitive and potentially lucrative, but more start-ups fail than succeed. However, Singular has managed to find a previously unoccupied niche in the industry, as it is the only publication that specifically focuses on unmarried upscale adults and caters to their tastes and needs, both in terms of editorial and advertising content. Further, Wright has launched a website (SingularCity.com) which he intends to be a kind of cyberspace social hub wherein the magazine will publicize singles events they and others have created. Their hope is to create a community of happy singles… and, who knows? A few of them might even fall in love and get married…but hopefully they’ll keep their subscriptions to the magazine (or at least one).
Singular’s newsstand price is $4.99. A free copy may be obtained on the website.