Campbell Milligan, Monster Children
Campbell Milligan, Monster Children Interview
Campbell Milligan is the co-founder of Monster Children, something that, in my opinion, is so much more than a magazine. It’s a cultural movement. Campbell is a nice guy, sure, but he might be a little insane. Monster Children has the audacity, in this day and age, to create original stories and produce photographs and spend quality time working them into a tangible medium.
Maybe he’s a true renegade. After all, what kind of person risks his own sanity, and perhaps the mental stability of the entire Monster Children team, to deliver an outstanding product, issue after issue, for the sake of quality? Is he doing it for money? Fame? Maybe it’s to create something he knows people need.
Those answers are for another day. I am much more interested in finding out what he wanted to be when he grew up.
What did you want to be when you were a child?
I grew up on a farm in the South of Western Australia 100k’s from a coastline, and up until my 13th all I knew. I’d bought three chickens and a rooster and was in the process of saving money to buy a bull to start my own stud.
What do you love?
Music. It’s the one thing I come back to for inspiration, it’s there in bad and good times. I can listen to music and let it take me anywhere. I like it loud or soft and in many varied genres. I don’t have the capacity to truly describe how much music has meant and means to me.
How would you describe Monster Children to a blind person?
I have difficulty describing it to an able-seeing person. “Lifestyle.” That word kills me. I’d probably read an intro from Jason (the editor), and hope it wasn’t too offensive. Not that he usually writes anything to do with the issue, so the person would then know about his love life, or lack thereof.
Is the word “blind” offensive? I just looked it up and there seems to be mixed thoughts on the subject.
I’d think blind people have bigger things to be concerned about than that title. And I’d say no. We live in a cotton wool society these days where pretty much anything is frowned upon.
What’s the Monster Children process like?
I have an editorial deadline tomorrow for our December issue, and there are still pages we need to find, so tomorrow- that’s how far out I work. There are certain bigger idea “projects” we have in the pipeline, but issue to issue is still a lot of, “Hey I found this guy or girl, lets do something.” Which I love. Jason and I mainly get together after an issue ends, say we’re sorry for all the nasty things we called each other during deadline, then just spitball ideas and people.
Is Monster Children today what you thought it was going to be 10 years ago?
I can honestly say I never expected it to last this long, it can be the biggest pain in the ass, and the most rewarding all in the same week. I’ve lost friends gained friends, been disappointed and had the craziest adventures through it. None of this answers your question, but I really don’t have an answer. I thought it would get me a “real” job maybe?
Best advice you could give to someone who wants to become a journalist?
Ask Jason our editor. He’d probably say, “Have a few mental issues, drink a shit load and write like the world was going to end the next day.” All the writers I like and use are nuts, like, properly nuts. Bat shit nuts.
There’s more; those are the ones I’ve read lately.
What’s something you had to learn the hard way?
Saying no to people. Whether in life or business, the ability to say no. Taking too much on or being afraid to hurt someone’s feelings. Then in the long run it all comes crashing around you. I’m the master of that. That and anything to do with money, fucking useless.
What is one thing most people would be surprised to learn about you?
I failed art. Lied to get my first design job. Actually that’s not that surprising.
Who are some of your influences?
Uh. Chris Ashworth for magazines – Radiohead and Thom Yorke – Music – Chris and all my friends.
How do you define success?
Happiness. Calm. Simplicity.
What makes a good magazine?
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