Tuesday, 1 November 2011

The Shrieking Violet issue 16, Manchester Blog Award and recent inspiration

Issue 16 features Bert Jansch, Manchester's typography, city quarters, Esperanto, Belle Vue, smokey beans, creative writing, poetry, embroidery and illustration.

I have been thinking about the different types of quarters that seem to be appearing more and more, not just in Manchester but in other towns and cities I have visited.

Nija Dalal is a writer and radio producer, and has just finished an MA in Anthropology. She's radio obsessive, cooks and crafts and sews, and keeps a blog about it when she remembers. She grew up in the American South, in a bizarre immigrant household, though no more bizarre than most immigrant households. She says "y'all." Currently in Manchester, she's lived in Sydney and Atlanta, and she's looking for a job in radio (do you have one going, by the way?)...Nija has condensed some of her Masters thesis findings into an article about the anthropological implications of Manchester's typography.

Bill Chapman, who has been speaking Esperanto since 1967, got in touch with me offering an insider's perspective on an article I wrote about the Esperanto for the modernist issue 1. During our subsequent exchange of emails, he sent me a photo of the Manchester Esperanto society in 1948 (motto 'Obstinately onwards'!) and told me about the adventures Esperanto has enabled him to have. Esperanto celebrates its 125th anniversary next year, and I asked Bill to expand on his stories in article form for the Shrieking Violet. Bill is a magistrate in north Wales and has worked for many years in education and training, most recently in the field of lifelong learning. He is enjoying being a grandfather.
Long-time contributor and friend of the Shrieking Violet Rebecca Willmott describes herself as 'a self publisher with a specific writing interest in revisiting the circus with a needle and thread'. Her favourite things are: pumpkins, clowns, embroidery hoops and running writing and book binding workshops with children and sometimes adults, 'but children are more curious'. Manchester's Belle Vue circus holds a particular fascination for Rebecca, and she has written and embroidered an article on it. Rebecca has just moved to London to start an internship at textile magazine Selvedge.

Louise M. North wrote her first story, about a blue apple, aged 5. She likes writing about the odd, the weird and the wonderful and, if she can manage it, the odd, weird and wonderful all in one story. Louise has combined the odd and weird in a story about a recognisable Manchester locale, with an illustration by Alex Boswell.

Cyrus Amini, who has contributed a poem to issue 16 of the Shrieking Violet, has previously been an independent video producer and broadcast professional. He now develops property nicely but mainly concentrates on enjoying himself.

Mr Jacket's smokey beans recipe came to the Shrieking Violet via Morag Rose of the Loiterers Resistance Movement. I have tried and tested it and recommend eating hearty helpings on top of toasted, buttered rye bread for dinner on a winter's night, with the leftovers for lunch the next day.

The cover is by Manchester-based illustrator Bryony Jackson. I'm really pleased as I have long been a fan of Bryony's work and have been asking her to design a cover ever since the Shrieking Violet started back in August 2009!

Daniel Fogarty, an artist and designer based at Rogue Studios in Ancoats, kindly assisted with the design and layout.

Remember, this publication is best read whilst listening to guitarist and singer Bert Jansch, who died of cancer last month.

Read issue 16 online here:
Download and print your own copy of the Shrieking Violet here.

Very badly photocopied copies will be left around various places in the city centre this afternoon and tomorrow afternoon, including Piccadilly Records, Good Grief! shop (in the Soup Kitchen), Koffee Pot, Oklahoma, Nexus Art Cafe, Cornerhouse.

To request a copy in the post (free) or to contribute to future editions email Natalie.Rose.Bradbury@googlemail.com or join the Shrieking Violet Facebook group.

Manchester Blog Award

The Shrieking Violet won Best Arts and Culture Blog at the 2011 Manchester Blog Awards which took place during Manchester Literature Festival, after being nominated for the third year in a row. It was good to hear readings from other blogs at the awards ceremony, and to hear the winning entires in the Real Story competition, including Shrieking Violet contributor Nija Dalal! It was a shame that I was rushing off to the Jens Lekman gig at Band on the Wall, on the other side of town. Many thanks to anyone who read, nominated or voted for the Shrieking Violet.

Other winners included Shrieking Violet issue 10/Manchester's Modernist Heroines contributor Hayley Flynn, who won Best City and Neighbourhood Blog with Skyliner. David Bailey, who designed the cover for the Shrieking Violet issue 10, won Best Personal Blog for Food Legend.

Recent inspiration

I've been dipping in and out of the artist Ryan Gander's book Catalogue Raisonabble Vol. 1. My favourite bits of the book are his writing, especially extracts from his 'Loose Associations', interesting essays which flit from topic to topic in 'loose associations'. These led me to a brilliant magazine called Dot Dot Dot, produced by Stuart Bailey of Dexter Sinister, in which some of Gander's Loose Associations appeared. I've been reading issue 19 of Dot Dot Dot, which compiles editions of a newspaper called THE FIRST/LAST NEWSPAPER which was issued from Port Authority for three weeks during November 2009. Content is a mixture of archive material and contemporary articles written by different international artists and writers, some fairly short and others more in-depth, quite often concerning the media, the history of the press, the evolution of publishing and mass communication.

I recently watched this lecture from 2007, which has contributions from Stuart Bailey, as well as Michael Bierut from the website Design Observer. I really enjoyed hearing about how Dot Dot Dot started and developed as a magazine, and how it received submissions of content that was not what you would expect to find in a graphic design magazine but the editors published it anyway to change conceptions about what 'should' be printed. I was also interested in Michael Bierut's talk about how Design Observer started and grew, and attracted readers despite the length of its posts! He made some observations about comments on blogs and blogging 'communities'. I am often discouraged that there are few comments posted on the Shrieking Violet (especially negative comments) and the lack of discussion or debate around anything I write.


Chrissy Brand said...

Another brilliant edition hits the newsstands ;-) Loved the item on typefaces in particular. Thanks.


The Shrieking Violet said...

Thanks for reading Chrissy!

bex said...

Hey Natalie, it's Becky, Alice Kelly's sister...she gave me your zine at Christmas, just interested to know if you're learning Esperanto?...it has inspired me!

reda said...
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