Hugh Hefner's name is still at the top of the mast as editor in chief, but James Kaminsky is running things these days as Playboy's editorial director headquartered in Manhattan. Jim joined the monthly in October of last year following a tour of duty as exec editor of Maxim. But don't expect Hef's baby to become a "lad" mag. "I've always loved Playboy and about 10 years ago we were passing a newsstand covered with Playboy promotion and I told my girl (now his wife and mother of his two kids), `That's where I want to work some day."' He's 41, worked for publications as disparate as Women's Wear Daily and Wenner's Men's Journal. He flies to L.A. once a month to see Hefner ("he's still very involved, going over every photo with a loupe before publication"). Kaminsky talks with Christie Hefner daily on business matters. Circ is steady at 3.2 million (about half a million newsstand) and Jim thinks they're picking up some "lad" mag readers as they grow up and want some good, long-form journalism. Kaminsky's focus is on Playboy's 50th anniversary number coming in January ("twice the size of our usual issue") featuring an article by Norman Mailer, a George McGovern piece about Howard Dean and perhaps the last freelance piece George Plimpton ever wrote.
Myrna Blyth's eagerly awaited book will be out March 1 from St. Martin's Press. It's titled "Spin Sisters" and all about women in the media and how they sell happiness, liberalism and lots of other great stuff.
Kate Kelly Smith and Miriam Arond of Child honor six "children's champions" Nov. 6 at the Hudson Theatre in Manhattan. Maya Angelou, Marlo Thomas, Meredith Vieira hand out awards.
Travel & Leisure Golf hired Corey Seymour and Ty Wenger as senior editors. Don't know their handicaps.
Let's hear it for Ed McCarrick, publisher of Time who becomes worldwide publisher of all global editions now recentralized in N.Y. With U.S. circ at 4 million, Europe/Middle East/Africa at 575,000, and Time Asia at 300,000, the idea of the new setup is "aligning global sales and marketing functions under our most senior sales executive."
Meredith tossing a party tonight at Lea, 230 Park Ave in Manhattan, for Jerry Kaplan celebrating 29 years at the firm, most recently as prez of the Meredith Magazine Group. He retires at year's end.