When we started throwing theme ideas around for Graceless Magazine, one that bubbled to the top pretty quickly was Community. There’s a lot buried in that word and many iterations of it, which means multiple angles to explore in our first issue. It’s also what we’ve been trying to do with Graceless since its launch and are now doubling down on with the magazine.

Community is what we were all trying to create when we set out on social media, only to end up isolating ourselves even more. It’s what so many of us are hungry for in a time that seems determined to break our spirits. And, if done correctly, it’s our ticket out of the current mess we’re in.

We can’t move forward without solid ground beneath us, ground that is laid by creating spaces that support, strengthen, and inspire. We need to hold each other up when we can and ask to be held up when we can’t do it ourselves. Perhaps most importantly, we must listen to each other, to the stories and experiences of those that walk different paths. We then need to integrate all of these stories into a more complex worldview that is now not only necessary but vital.

With all that in mind, the January/February issue of Graceless Magazine will focus on community in multiple forms. We’ll be taking a look at communities that formed around the midterm elections, online and offline hobby groups, nonprofits working to build communities around service, and much more.

We’re especially excited about the real-world part of our first issue. Start thinking now about local issues that matter to you—we’re all going to pick one to work on in January and February. Also take some time over the next month to look through fun events coming up that you want to go to. More on that later too. And finally, join our Facebook group if you haven’t yet. It’s going to be the hub of a lot of activity going forward, and you don’t want to miss out.

Allyson and I are getting to work assigning writers and spiffing up the site. We’ll have more updates soon. In the meantime, let us know what you think of our inaugural theme in the comments!