Hello, and welcome to the new site! We’ve spent a lot of time putting everything together for you, and we can’t wait for you to take a look around. But before we go over what we’ve changed, we want to assure you that many things will be staying exactly the same. Namely, our vision and commitment to finding a different lens on movies: no clickbait, no sensationalism, no hot takes—just honest, insightful, intelligent film writing with a beating heart behind it. That’s been our guiding light since we launched the magazine in 2013, and that’s not changing one bit.
We’ll also still be organizing each month/issue around a particular theme, though our new format and structure (detailed below) will allow us increased flexibility to cover more movie-related things in real time as well. Instead of dropping an entire issue of 10-12 essays on you all at once and then disappearing for a month, we’d like to become a more regular presence in your life—to have Bright Wall/Dark Room be a place you want to continuously revisit—and we hope you like the sound of that as well.
We’ll be sticking with our same paywall provider, so if you’re currently signed up, then your subscription should have carried over to the new site seamlessly. But if you’ve been on the fence about subscribing, now is the perfect time to join us and help support independent film writing that isn’t afraid of exploring the unknown, taking a moment to slow down and breathe, or focusing on insight over instinct. And to further encourage you to do so, we’re sweetening the pot by offering our biggest subscription discount ever for the entire month of September. Starting today, you can purchase a trial subscription, getting your first month for $1 (reg: $2.99) or your first year for $15 (reg: $25).
With that out of the way, let’s take a look at some of the changes you’ll see on the new site…
A new publishing schedule
New essays around our monthly theme will always be coming out every Monday and Wednesday. On Fridays, we’ll sometimes also be publishing on-theme essays then too, but we’ll also be running a variety of other pieces – coverage of what’s currently in theaters, interviews, columns and so on. At the end of the month, much as we’ve released ebook editions in concert with each new issue in the past, we’ll collate everything we’ve published over the last month and release it in ebook form.
A quick guide to the new site
A few elements of the site have moved around, so here’s a quick guide:
At the top of the site, there’ll always be the latest essay we’ve published. Now that we’re updating on a rolling basis, we want to make it as easy as possible to read the newest piece on the site, and this will always be sitting at the top of the page.
Below this, you’ll see featured pieces from our two most recent issues, selected cuts from our archives, and down towards the bottom is a feed (if you’re persistent and keep clicking) of everything we’ve ever published. This will occasionally move around a little—largely based on how many pieces in the current issue are out—but the general layout should stay fairly consistent.
Our navigation looks a little different, too:
Some of these are fairly self-explanatory. Our FAQs and Masthead are now rolled into our About page. Our latest call for submissions will always be sitting on the (you guessed it) Submissions page. If you’re a new subscriber, the Subscriptions link will allow you to sign up to unlock access to everything on the site; if you’re currently subscribed, you’ll be able to log in and manage your account from there.
If you’re used to downloading the ebook editions of Bright Wall/Dark Room, this is maybe the most pronounced change—rather than on individual issue pages, now they’re all consolidated on our main Issues index:
If you’re signed out or not subscribed, you’ll instead see links to buy individual ebook editions.
Right down at the bottom of our homepage, you’ll see three more links:
Tags largely replaces the film index on the old site – as we start to explore areas that aren’t confined to a single subject, having a fairly static index that only catalogs a portion of what we do was proving less and less useful.
Our Contact page is the same as before, just moved to a different place – if you have an inquiry or a message for us (that isn’t submitting a pitch or an essay), feel free to do so there.
If you’re a BW/DR contributor, the Contributor Login link will allow you to edit and update your author profile whenever you like.
And…that should just about cover it for now. The very first essay in our David Lynch issue is now online, and three more will be coming your way next week. In the meantime, we encourage you to browse through the site & check out the archives—we’ve put out 50 issues (and over 500 essays) to date, and there are a lot of buried treasures waiting to be found!