Spark Magazine

Spark Magazine – ‘at the heart of the alternative Westcountry’ – featured Rima and I in their Spring edition, in an article about storytelling. Kate Evans – who some of you will know more for the wonderful Copse (The Cartoon Book of Tree Protesting) than for her local journalism – persevered with lousy phone lines and crackling mobiles to get some words from us, and did a not bad job all told, despite my best attempts to represent myself as an alcohol-sodden lunatic, telling tales of dubious origin behind roadside hedges and round post-apocalyptic brazier-fires. I don’t know why I’m drawn to anti-advertise in this way – where some might see it purely as self-sabotage, I like to argue that it’s a subversion of the whole notion of advertising, a weeding-out of the easily swayed… Whatever… Folk seem to like the stories and thankfully Kate filtered out my less printable comments about the Venerable Art of storytelling, ill-advised use of plant-based psychoactives whilst storytelling, and my idea of appropriate tales to tell to children. Thanks, Kate!

You can see the end-result here, along with a photo of Rima being beautiful and me looking like a pillock. And if you don’t know Spark, take a look at the print version – I’d never come across it before and it seems to be a good thing. Nice thick paper, too, which you can’t gauge on the web, of course…

Issue 72 of Spark Magazine.


5 thoughts on “Spark Magazine

  1. Thank you for this, the whole article is interesting, nay essential, reading. I have to say you both looked part of the storyl and anyway losing dignity is part and parcel story telling. With reference to stories suitable for children I find my 11 year old class like them gory and with the wicked getting their just desserts. Children are very much of the eye for an eye philosophy.
    I am just learning to oral story tell (never having had the courage before) with a view to using the methods in school to enhance the learning and understanding of the children. Using the techniques of unpicking the flesh and paring a story back to the bone, then re-muscling the bones and finding a new skin is fascinating. I firmly believe that story is the silken thread that binds us into community, knits us to each other and weaves us the tapestry to show others our point of view. Using words and image, sound and form is essential in creating the tools of communication in small children and adults alike.

    I am still longing for the chance to see you and Rima weave your magic. In the meantime will have to work on my own. Thank you again, for the worlds you and Rima’s Hermitage give us a glimpse into.

  2. Advertising as an alcohol steeped hedge lunatic is good advertising as far as I can see. Possibly more interesting and in some way (?) true than the wholesome wide eyed sweetness of the article…!
    The ill advised bits about entheogens and storytelling etc were sorely missed I reckon…the photo is awesome too and you two are the loveliest sweetheart storytellers…huzzah!

  3. Thanks, folks!

    Charlotte – we *will* make it to tell near you sometime, but I can’t say when yet! Our best laid plans are constantly buffeted by the harsh winds of the final stages of this acupuncture course…
    This year, thus far, we’re only scheduled to tell at Unciv in Hampshire and at the Time book launch in London, as far as I can remember. We’re just now trying to work out what to tell at Unciv, whether to carry on in the Russian/Siberian and Gypsy veins or branch out into one of my own tales. Time will tell…

    Rosie – thanks for the words! Yes, storytelling shouldn’t just be the preserve of wholesomeness. I quite like my storytellers hunched over a mug of whisky round the smoky fire, pausing often to light a forlorn roll-up from fingerless-gloved hands and shake the rats out of their pockets. I’d almost go as far as saying that I wouldn’t trust a storyteller who washes too often…

  4. Gorgeous tales & telling, sir :]
    We’ve got to catch up and resume conversation sometime. We’ve moved all the way over to Oregon, about an hour from the coast/ The Pacific Northwest is really something else.

    Hoping all’s going well waaaay over thar!

    x Tiff

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