NEW YORK—In an unprecedented move that has sent shockwaves through the magazine industry, Jane announced plans Monday to publish a special "Sex Issue."
"When the editorial staff got together to plan our next issue, somebody jokingly suggested devoting an entire issue to sex—a 'sex issue,' if you will," said Jane Pratt, editor-in-chief of Jane, a monthly magazine geared toward hip 18- to 32-year-old women. "After the laughter died down, the room fell silent for almost a minute. It was clear we'd stumbled onto something."
Founded in 1997, Jane has featured articles about sex in previous issues. But never before has it—or any other magazine—published a single issue featuring so many articles on the subject that it could only be called "The Sex Issue."
"The issue will contain all sorts of articles about sex, written by women who've had sex, for women who've had sex," Pratt said. "No doubt, some people out there will think we've gone too far, but we here at Jane have never been afraid to be provocative and really shake things up."
"This is real," Pratt continued. "This is what happens between the sheets. Everyone talks about sex behind closed doors. We thought it was time to break down those doors and bring it out into the open."
While the full content of the issue has not been revealed, Pratt mentioned several of the articles that made the final cut. Among them are "What He's Really Thinking About Your Body," "Seven Ways To Make Him Scream," and "The 'Big O': A How-To Guide."
"I promise you this is going to be a wild ride," Pratt said. "One of our reporters is doing a story about the 'ins and outs' of vibrators, and another is actually reviewing porn. That should really ruffle some feathers within the more conservative quarters of the magazine world."
Added Pratt: "Some [of our readers] might be a little put off by the idea of an entire 'sex issue' at first. But if they just give it a chance, I'm confident they won't be able to put it down—until their boyfriends get home."
In spite of the enthusiasm among Jane staffers, the decision to publish a sex issue was not an easy one.
"Initially, we were afraid our advertisers were going to shy away from this," advertising director Corinne McHugh said. "It turns out, they were all crazy for the idea. We had to double our page count just to keep up with the ads that came flooding in."
In the wake of the announcement, a number of other publications have announced plans for "sex issues," including Cosmopolitan, Vogue, FHM, Stuff, Men's Health, Esquire, Spin, Entertainment Weekly, Sports Illustrated, Vanity Fair, Harper's, Better Homes & Gardens, Money, Mother Jones, Comics Buyer's Guide, National Geographic, Reason, The Watchtower, Model Railroader, Biblical Archaeology Review, and Cat Fancy.
"I don't know why we didn't think of this sooner," Pratt said. "It's like a license to print money. Sexy money."