In March 1972, Flynt created the Hustler Newsletter, a four-page, black-and-white publication of information about his clubs. This item became so popular with his customers that by May 1972 he expanded the Hustler Newsletter to 16 pages and in August 1973, to 32 pages. As a result of the 1973 oil crisis the United States entered an economic recession; Hustler Club customers tightened their spending and Flynt had to find financing to pay his debts or go bankrupt. He decided to turn the Hustler Newsletter into a national sexually explicit magazine. He paid the start-up costs of the new magazine using sales taxes collected in the clubs. In July 1974, the first issue of Hustler was published. Although the first few issues went largely unnoticed, within a year it became highly lucrative and he was able to pay his tax debts. The magazine struggled for the first year, partly because many distributors and wholesalers refused to handle it as its nude photos became increasingly graphic. It targeted working-class men and grew from a shaky start to a peak circulation of around 3 million (current circulation is below 500,000). In November 1974, Hustler showed the first "pink-shots," or photos of open vaginas. Flynt had to fight to publish each issue as many people, including his distribution company, found the magazine too sexually explicit and threatened to have it removed from the market. Shortly thereafter, Flynt was approached by a paparazzo who had taken nude pictures of former First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis while she was sunbathing on vacation in 1971. He purchased them for $18,000 and published them in the August 1975 issue. That issue attracted widespread attention, and one million copies were sold within a few days. Now a millionaire, he bought a $375,000 (1976 dollars) mansion.
Read more about this topic: Larry Flynt Publications
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Famous quotes containing the words magazine and/or hustler:
“A faithful lover is a character greatly out of date, and rarely now used but to adorn some romantic novel, or for a flourish on the stage. He passes now for a man of little merit, or one who knows nothing of the world.”
—Anonymous, U.S. womens magazine contributor. Weekly Visitor or Ladies Miscellany, p. 20 (April 1803)
“The more characteristic American hero in the earlier day, and the more beloved type at all times, was not the hustler but the whittler.”
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