Finally you can view the Good Being a Girl Art Zine created during Lockdown June 2020
https://www.sketchbookproject.com/library/S31110952020 with contributors from 9-96 years!
A document of that time of weirdness and how isolation can encourage creativity and activism
Happy International Women’s Day 8th March 2021 ! Here are some book recommendations for little and young feminists from a piece I did for Lantana Publishing
It’s a new year and we have Kamala Harris as VP in the White House, just for starters…
It has become a bit of a New Year’s Day tradition for me to visit an inspiring place connected to a woman who inspires me. Last Year I took the knee at Emmeline Pankhurst’s statue in Victoria Tower Gardens, near to the Houses of Parliament.
This year in the midst of reading Square Haunting by Francesca Wade I took myself off to Bloomsbury.
This enthralling book is about 5 women, Freedom and london between the Wars including H.D, a modernist poet, Dorothy L Sayers, detective novelist, Jane Ellen Harrison, classicist and translator, Eileen Power, historian, broadcaster and pacifist and Virginia Woolf. All 5 of these trail blazing women writers and scholars had a room of their own on Mecklenburg Square, in Bloomsbury, at various times between the wars.
Next book up was the fabulous feminist detective novel Gaudy Night by Dorothy Sayers, which begins:
“Harriet Vane sat at her writing-table and stared out into Mecklenburg Square…” a must read that will leave you amazed at how modern and radical the character and writing is.
NOVEMBER 2020 LOCKDOWN ADVENTURE AND STUNNING STATUES
It seemed like a full scale expedition setting out on the glorious Overground to Canonbury, in North East London, from the deep South.
The reason – to go see Maggi Hambling’s much talked about sculpture in honour of Mary Wollenstonecraft .A gorgeous, fluid silver art work in the heart of Newington Green.
and see two friends- for a most wonderful socially distanced cup of tea and and chat about art and feminism and how we felt we were having an adventure.
And may we have many more statues, public art pieces which honour women… some coming soon are hopefully a statue of Sylvia Pankhurst http://sylviapankhurst.gn.apc.org/ in Clerkenwell Green plus a seated statue of Virginia Woolf in Richmond sponsored by https://www.aurorametro.org/virginia-woolf-statue
Check out the ones we can see now in London https://statuesforequality.com/pages/london and for more national picture of the power of the plinth see the website of the campaigning work of Terri Bell-Halliwell https://www.invisiblewomen.org.uk
JUNE 2020 LOCKDOWN HAPPENINGS
January seems like a lifetime away and now in late June there is the stirrings of remergence from lockdown and the new routines we have been inhabiting during.Feels like the world’s mood is shifting to what matters…
Lucky to have been furloughed from the bookshop where I work and had time for those things I always feel I don’t have time for – like creative projects and writing. In fact I have bullied and cajoled female friends and family of all ages to contribute to a new Good Being A Girl Zine art project as part of Brooklyn Art Library’s Sketchbook project https://www.sketchbookproject.com/
Fern rubbings, cutting and pasting zine pages, photos, screen prints, my sister,my Mum, my friend’s 8 year old. Will upload the finished sketchbook when done .See below lovely screenprint of a friend by her wife.
Melonie Syrett’s ‘How To Support Your Daughter Through Puberty’ is the ONLY puberty book specifically for mothers of 8-13 year olds! It provides all of the facts around puberty and periods that mums need to know to support their growing girls PLUS ‘How To’ advice on answering questions and picking the right time to speak to your daughter. Melonie Syrett is an Educator and Specialised Menstrual Health Expert. She offers real life experience and questions and combines these with facts and advice to ensure that mums feel supported and that the next generation of girls grow up shame free and body loving! Melonie’s work has been rolled out across schools in the UK as City to Sea’s Rethink Period’s Campaign which has been fully funded by Waitrose, she has been involved in the creation of the Period Friendly Bristol Education guidance and recently trained Girl Guide leaders and Youth Workers in how to confidently support young people with periods. She also trains women to work with girls and their mothers outside of education and holds puberty and period sessions.https://www.meloniesyrett.com/
Tessa Saunderson’s follow up book to Ruby Luna’s Journey is Ruby Luna’s Moontime .
Ruby Luna starts her period at 10 years old and keeps a diary for the next two years all about the menstrual products she tries and the things that happen to her and her friends. It is aimed at 10-12 year olds, but would be suitable for any girl starting her period earlier than that. It also covers the transition from primary to secondary school. It is written with humour to keep the topic light and entertaining, but includes lots of information from the impact of diet on periods to when girls historically started menarche (first period) in an accessible way.
2020 is the year for new happenings and connections and celebrating all those women who are linking up to challenge taboos and highlight the wonder and reality that is menstruation , having our monthlies and knowing our bodies and how amazing they are.
Tessa Venuti Sanderson has written and illustrated a treasure of a book which turns all those boring puberty text books on their heads! Check out her amazing website www.cyclicalwisdom.com
Delighted that Rachael Crow from www.moontimes.co.uk is using my book Making Pink Lemonade in her mum and daughter menstruation celebration groups. Check out her incredible range of eco menstrual products and online courses to inspire and guide you through the phases of girl and womanhood.
On just the day I needed it, my much-looking-forward to, copy of Creatrix by Lucy Pearce arrived in the post.What does it mean to live in a service to your creativity and in direct connection to the creative source?So looking forward to finding out! Lucy Pearce has created a pioneer publishing imprint , Womancraft as a platform dedicated to sharing exciting new voices , including her own and powerful messages that are being overlooked, silenced or sanitized in traditional publishing. www.womancraftpublishing.com
Creatrix is about living a creative life and the soul need that we have for doing that. Lucy guides us along a path to creating and making that space and time to do it. With personal experiences from Lucy Pearce , Rachael Crow from Moontimes ( see above) and other Creatrixes, the true reality of the practical process of creating something and the nurturing of the soul ,help to light the way.
As Justine Musk puts it “I see a creatrix as someone who sees his or her creativity to take the female wound and transform it. To take us from pain to power. To release the shame that keeps so amy of us trapped and fearful. To give voice to authentic feminine experience – every bit as bold and loud as it wants or needs to be.”
A GRAND DAY OUT BY THE SEA
Brighton at its best Friday just gone with Laurika. Bluest of skies, bracing wind, lashing waves, plum tart and chips on the pier, no proper tea obviously and a must see tourist attraction visit to newly opened, The Feminist Bookshop on Upper North Street. Fantastic collection of adult and childrens new and old feminist classics, coffee and cake if you need it and a haven of a reading room downstairs. So perfect I thought I must have dreamt it up! As I queued up to buy Sister Outsider by Audre Lorde , there in fornt of me were the women who ran the Silver Moon Bookshop – a feminist bookshop that used to be on Charing Cross Road in. London.The torch has been handed over- hurrah! http://www.feministbookshop.com