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Audible: The First Football Fan Magazine For Women

Posted on October 18, 2009 by John Wingspread Howell

Audible magazine was created for women by a female sports fan.

Audible magazine was created for women by a female football fan.

This could be a sign of the apocalypse.

A recent story on NPR reported the growing trend of women’s fantasy football leagues. And now, there’s an online football magazine for women: Audible!

At Underdog Sports, we love anyone or anything that challenges the status quo, reinvents the wheel, operates outside of the box, or makes the box into a basket. In our estimation, what could be more in keeping with the underdog spirit than a football magazine for the female fan.

Audible (www.audiblemagazine.com) is a very well-done magazine for women who love football. It is essentially a one-woman operation, and that woman has a day job, at least for now. Because of that, it is understandably a little thin on content. But the mag looks good and the content found there is definitely well written.

Cindi Dammann, Audible’s founder, editor and publisher, grew up loving football from as far back as she can remember. Like most children of either gender, she was introduced to the sport by her father. They watched college and pro games together on television.

“There was just something about the game that grabbed me,” Damman said. “I was hooked.”

Yet naïve. Dammann says she was surprised but pleased to discover as a high school freshman that high schools had football teams. From the first game, that first year, she never missed.

Now fast forward to young adulthood. Dammann, a Chicagoland native, was living and working in Miami. It was that magical year in Chicago sports lore—1985. It was the pre-season. Her boss mentioned to her, “Your Bears are playing in town this weekend.”

Dammann got her hands on some tickets, watched the Bears lose to the fish, and from then on knew she had to be in the house, wherever the Bears play—home or away.  Twenty-four years later, Dammann attends every regular season and post-season game the Bears play.

Magazine founder Cindi Dammann is a life-long sports fan and doesn't miss a game of her beloved Chicago Bears.

Magazine founder Cindi Dammann is a life-long football fan and doesn't miss a game of her beloved Chicago Bears.

But it’s not a short leap from addicted fan to magazine publisher. On the other hand, personal growth specialists will tell you that there comes a moment in everyone’s life when your passion meets your purpose and a new career is born.

Dammann got the idea when she was speaking with an acquaintance on the West Coast who mentioned starting an online magazine. As soon as Dammann heard those two words in the same sentence, she knew what she would be doing in her spare time.

“It was just one of those things,” she said. “You know, synergy, synchronicity? Somebody says something and the light goes on and suddenly you know exactly what you want to be doing more than anything else.”

Dammann actually teamed up with the other woman to get the brand launched, but both have day jobs and  her colleague has had to pull back just to manage her own magazine (different topic). That leaves Dammann as a publishing company of one. Between a demanding daytime schedule as a professional recruiter, her weekly commitments to follow the Bears wherever they may play, and keeping her new project moving and growing, Dammann is devoid of time for anything else—literally.

A quick visit to the Audible site provides an intriguing if not crowded menu. Articles in the current issue include such titles as, “Preseason Games- Should I Care?”  “Female vs. Male Fans, Are We Really that Different?” as well as explanations of the rules, interviews and a “Most Valuable Fan” category.

Dammann hopes to be able to make Audible her only professional commitment in the very near future. But in the meantime, her new baby has all the signs of healthy development, promising a long and successful life.

John Wingspread Howell is a novelist, sportswriter and columnist, and publisher of the online magazine, Underdog Sports (www.underdog.sports.officelive.com.). He is a regular contributor to Sports Then and Now.

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