The Blizzard!

I was fortunate to get a a free copy of The Blizzard in my recent trip to the London Socrates meet-up. If I had to put it into a category I would have it as being a product in between a book and a magazine, probably best described as a football journal. It is a quarterly  publication and when you start to read it you can see why.

There is no way I would read The Blizzard in one sitting, you can’t take everything in. It is an ideal coffee table book well journal, something you can pick up at will and read something new. Even in one month I would say it would be too hard to digest all that you have read and be ready for a new issue. So the fact it is out every three months makes a lot of sense.

Did I get everything I read? Eh not really I would say some of it is very wordy, highbrow and some of the writers are showing off a bit and being self indulgent but in fairness they make no apologies for this the publication was made so writers/journalists had a platform to write stories that would not interest current affairs based newspapers but interest the writers themselves and connoisseurs of all things football. The other fact is that all though you might not get a certain article or like a particular writer there is plenty more diverse stuff in there that you just go on to that piece of writing.

For me the two interview stood out as great pieces. The Barry Davies interview by Rob Smyth was magnificent. Was it long? Yes but that is what adds to the whole thing, its not a tabloid interview asking five bland frequently asked questions, it is a detailed conversation with a man who was a fantastic football commentator. Rob delves into what people want to know about players, teams, games, the media, different eras and the answers that Barry gives Rob show that he has a story to tell and he is happy to do so. In fact the whole Media section was a joy to read for me someone who knows the industry.

Again the Dragan Stojkovic interview is not short but why would you want it to be? The man is a cult hero and how many times have we read or heard his words? In it you find out what makes him the manager he is today, the influence Arsene Wenger had on him and about Japanese football. It is riveting stuff and you get immersed in it, again credit to the interviewer Andrew McKirdy and no interview is good without a great subject like Dragan who is open to discuss things.

Gabriele Marcotti’s Italia 90 journey brings back lots of memories for those who remember that tournament. The articles on Clairefontaine and Gianni Brera were particularly brilliant and engrossing for me. Be in no doubt that by reading The Blizzard you will definitely learn.

Now I am not going to lie and say I enjoyed everything. I am not a huge fan of fictional football stories, there is so much real stuff out there and great stories to tell that I just don’t see the point in making up tales. That said if you are a fan of such work you can’t complain at the quality of the writers as Rupert Fryer and Iain Macintosh are superb. I am also not a fan of looking back 35 years to one particular game but once again if you are then I am sure the piece by James Horncastle is a treat.

Being honest when I heard Jonathan Wilson first talk of The Blizzard I really didn’t get the concept and when it came out I thought the fuss was a bit more like an arse licking club rather than an unbiased view on the product. But in truth to understand it you have to read it, it certainly won’t entertain or satisfy everyone but I think for something so personal to the writers it has a lot more plus points than minuses.

Now I have never really got the ‘pay what you like’ thing but go to this page on The Blizzard to find out more for yourself. Its also available online and in hard copy.

For me personally, I enjoyed it. It was something different, passionate and the writers have stories they want to tell. All things we never get when we read certain papers or magazines.

6 Responses to “The Blizzard!”

  1. Is there any chance we could get a few copies of this at the Scottish Socrates meet?

  2. I am unsure logistics and time may cause a problem with that.

  3. ah well never mind then – could sort it out for the next meet if there is one

  4. Issue zero was a freebie less indulgent and far better articles IMO

  5. Leon – Issue Zero wasn’t a ‘freebie’, although we have always operated the pay-what-you-like pricing model which means that Issue Zero (as well as Issues One and Two, and the upcoming Issue Three) are all available from as little as 1p in pdf, mobi and epub formats (for PC/Mac, Kindle and iPad/iPhone respectively). Hard copies begin from ¬£6 + P&P, although the RRP is ¬£12.

    Thanks for the review too, Scott, and glad you enjoyed some of the contents.

    Garreth @ The Blizzard

  6. I enjoyed most of the content Garreth and well done to you and the team for producing such a unique product.

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