Welcome to Figment. You may already have some sense of who we are (Dana: a writer for The New Yorker; Jacob: the former managing editor of The New Yorker and Condé Nast Portfolio) and what we are trying to do (create an online reading and writing community around young-adult literature) and where the idea comes from (Japan). So we thought we’d talk a little bit about why we’re doing this. We are old friends and longtime colleagues. We have watched the publishing world transform over the past several years, and—nerve-wracking as it can be—we are excited by that change.
This is a moment of infectious optimism and openness to experimentation. Talking to kids about Figment, we are struck again and again by their desire to access good, engaging material from their cell phones and computers. Librarians and teachers, who work closely with young people every day, seem thrilled by the prospect of a digital platform for reading and writing groups. Established writers and their publishers see in Figment an opportunity to connect directly with an audience that has never been more enthusiastic. And emerging writers of all ages respond to the democratic, open form the site will take: anyone can write, anyone can read, and all of it is free.
Figment will be a place of collision and collaboration, and the only writing and reading site that is a hybrid of old publishing and new: a user-generated, amateur-driven community with the full participation of professional writers.
All of this inspires us. We hope it inspires you, and that you’ll join us in bringing it to life.
— Jacob & Dana