When first-year English student Lucia Tran was 8 years old, her first magazine subscription was to Us Weekly. She said she didn’t realize why her dad always took them away from her until she figured out it was a tabloid.
Six years later, at the age of 14, Tran created her own online magazine, Inspire Magazine, which she said was a place to help teenagers understand that being themselves isn’t a problem, something many magazines may convey.
Two years later, Tran transformed her online only content into a nationwide print magazine, Zooey Magazine.
“I read this book called “˜Franny and Zooey’ by J.D. Salinger. Zooey “¦ was the empowering kind of character that embraced intelligence and the wonderfulness of his own character and personality,” Tran said. “I thought that it would be a great way to release as a name for the magazine.”
Tonight, Zooey Magazine will be teaming up with UCLA’s Sport and Entertainment Business Network to conduct a Q&A panel with the Zooey Magazine’s main staff about their business and internship opportunities as well as TJ Thyne, “Bones” actor and Theater Junkies production company creator about his career and the film industry.
According to Tran, the CEO and editor in chief of Zooey Magazine, the event will serve as a way for people to learn how to break into the entertainment industry, whether their interest is in film, TV, photography, fashion, marketing or journalism.
Tran also said that, in addition to the Q&A with the Zooey Magazine team and Thyne, the event will also feature a screening of one of Thyne’s popular YouTube films, “Validation.”
Thyne, who studied acting at USC, will be answering questions that students have about film, TV and anything they want to know about Theatre Junkies, a production company Thyne started right out of college.
“I found that Los Angeles, though littered with the best talent in the world, is an extremely difficult city to thrive in as an actor and artist. You are somewhat on your own out here,” Thyne said. “Unlike New York, Chicago and London, where there is a communal feeling within the entertainment fields, L.A. seems to have an “˜every-man-for-himself’ mentality. That doesn’t work for me. I’m all about collaboration.”
Tiffany David, a third-year political science student and president of SEBN, said the main focus of the event and as a student group is to educate undergraduates about the sports and entertainment industry, whether it be through internship opportunities, assisting at industry events, information sessions or panels.
“We’re really trying to get entertainment and business aspects of other schools that we don’t really have here at UCLA,” David said. “We try to network through students, alumni, employers and community involvement. We’re an organization for students to use as a resource.”
Tran said she gives a lot of credit for the start-up of the magazine to her brother’s familiarity with the business world, as he helped to solidify her business plans. She also said a lot of managing the business has to do with networking and meeting the right people.
While Tran started her business at such a young age, the northern California native said she didn’t reveal her age until she moved to Los Angeles in order to protect herself and prevent anyone from judging her before they decided to work with Zooey Magazine or not.
“The magazine should be judged on how well it’s produced rather than how old the person behind it is,” Tran said.