I’d like to start by saying that I am honoured to be a part of Farrago’s nearly 100 year history. This magazine has been sharing the thoughts and opinions of students for generations. Even my own father graced our pages in the early ‘70s campaigning for better common areas for optometry students.
A few months ago I was scrolling through the Farrago archives trying to find my dad’s articles. In one of the 1974 editions I found a two page spread about smoking restrictions on campus, an issue that is still potent today. Even in one of the first ever editions of Farrago, students were complaining about not having enough space to park their horses and carriages, mirroring modern students’ attitudes towards parking their cars.
Unfortunately, Farrago’s history is also marred by political partisanship and impartiality. The same 1974 Farrago that featured an article on smoking also featured an ad for Gough Whitlam on the cover. Even in 2013, the edition seven cover featured an illustration of Tony Abbott featuring the caption ‘WE’RE FUCKED’.
My aim with Farrago 2014 is to move away from this type of editorial bias and focus on presenting the voices of students. While obviously many students agree with these Labor-centric ideas, it is the place of individual writers to express those beliefs, and not the editorial team. I hope that this magazine will appeal to all students of this university, regardless of their political beliefs.
Like many of you flicking through this magazine, I first stumbled upon Farrago in O-week. The year was 2010; I was little more than a friendless first year, who thought it was impossible to have their name published in Farrago, let alone one day become an editor. In the subsequent months, the Farrago dictators rejected six of my articles and didn’t even have the courtesy to tell me I was a lousy writer.
At the end of 2010, however, my luck changed. Incoming editors Tim, Erin, Geir, and Elizabeth decided to take a chance on me, something for which I will forever be grateful. Since then, Farrago has played a fundamental role in my life, making me the writer I am today and introducing me to a community of like-minded students.
As one of the 2014 editors, I look forward to being the person that gives you your chance. Sure, you may be brand new to this Uni, or may have never had your work published. But who knows, you could be editing this thing one day…
I’d also like to use this opportunity to acknowledge my predecessors. To Max, Ella, Vicky, Scott, Emma, Sarah, Meg, and Sally – thanks for being such supportive editors and good-quality humans. Here’s hoping I don’t ruin your magazine.
I was told many things when I became a Farrago editor: I’d be stressed beyond anything I’d ever felt before and have no time, but I’d have the best year ever. So far, only the last one is holding up to be true. The job is stressful, I can’t lie, but I love and enjoy it so much I barely notice it.
Farrago, true to its Latin name, is a mixed bag of things. This thing you hold in your hot little hands is the product of collaboration between a brilliant team of writers, subeditors, and illustrators. We can’t be grateful enough for their efforts in doing their respective thangs to pull Edition One together. It’s been so much fun working together, and I hope you enjoy reading the magazine as much as we enjoyed making it.
For those of you coming to the magazine anew, I hope you find something in it that inspires, teaches or even angers you. For anyone who has picked up a copy before, I hope we can match—if not beat—the expectations you’ve gained from the years preceding us. From the new uni smoking ban, to why you should eat insects, there’s something to suit everyone’s taste (so to speak).
Read Farrago, think about it, love it. And if you don’t, get in touch and tell us why—we want to hear your thoughts!
My friends still have no idea what I’m talking about when I tell them what I’m doing for work. “What, so you just choose what goes in the magazine?” goes a common reply. “So it’s mainly fixing grammar and punctuation?” goes another. And much of the time I struggle to answer them, because even I’m still figuring out what being a Farrago editor actually means. All I know is that on a daily basis I’m privileged to work with the most enthusiastic and outrageously talented students you could find. I get to publish writers and illustrators who may have never considered the possibility of their work appearing in print. There are too many get to’s and an unnerving absence of have to’s. In what other job would I be able to sit at a desk all morning and read stories ranging from an Australia Day spent in Indonesia to Hitler’s secret obsession with the abominable snowman?
Self-involved rhapsodising aside, there are some great pages ahead, and if you’re not featured in any of them I hope that in future you’ll take the time to get involved and contribute. You get to write about whatever you like, and get fame and devastating sexual magnetism in the process. What could be better?