Worth writing home about: The Blog North Awards are open for entries

Kate Feld

Nominations are now open for the annual blogging event – and Kate Feld wants your entries.  

Every August I get the fear, a whingy little thing that says: What if all the good blogs are gone? Even though I have spent the last eight years telling people this will never happen, what if… (gulp) blogging really is over?  But then entries for the competition I run, the Blog North Awards, start trickling in and the fear subsides. Because look, here are four, five, a dozen, 37, 163, 541 wonderful, original and surprising blogs I’ve never heard of before. My faith in humanity is restored. I never really doubted you, bloggers. Honest.

Blogs are ephemeral creatures. I was reminded of this fact when taking the participants in a recent blogging workshop on a tour of last year’s shortlists. Not 12 months later, a few had already closed up shop. Some were project-based blogs that had come to their natural conclusion, other bloggers had gotten tired of the old place and started a new one. Some just disappeared. A good blog is hard to maintain as success in blogging (which we do, usually, for love) invariably leads to having no time for blogging. If enough people really like your blog they will want you to do stuff like write books or take pictures or sell things or run things for money. It’s fiendishly hard to say no to those people.

Blogs are genuine. Nobody has to write a blog. They do it because they want to

I think part of the reason we respond so strongly to blogs is because they come from this doing it for love place. Most of them lack that certain pat slickness we have all come to expect from our digital media products. I like that they are rough around the edges. They come from real people telling the world about the things they love and enjoy and get excited about, the things that matter to them. They are genuine. Nobody has to write a blog. They do it because they want to.

So if you live in the North and write a blog, enter it in our competition before 8 September. It’s free, and hey – you never know, right? If you regularly read someone else’s blog and enjoy it, enter it for them because some people are shy about things like entering competitions and they might not feel comfortable doing it themselves. And then we’ll never know about it. That would be sad.

You can vote on the shortlist after it is announced in September. And you can come along for the Blog North Awards event on October 16 at Gorilla in Manchester, where the winners will be announced, and hear some of the shortlisted bloggers reading their work. This year we’ll also be entertained by A Short Guide to The Future, a specially-commissioned piece by author Chris Killen, and the witty literary stylings of music + words duo Les Malheureux. Join us.

Culture Guides

Cinema

We advise booking early this month as cinemas fill up with brand new award winners and offbeat classics.

Phoebe Davies: Points of Rupture at Site Gallery in Sheffield

Exhibitions

Art and women’s wrestling, Ancient Akkadian gravesites and invented artefacts – check out this month’s pick of exhibitions from across the north.

Half term fun - Young girl sat next to the tiger as part of the The Tiger who came to tea and the adventures of mog the forgetful cat exhibition

Families

Check out our top picks for Families this month. Whether it’s art, music, theatre, science, crafts or insects (!) you’re after, we’ve got you covered…

Poet and performer Kate Tempest.

Literature

From Helen Fielding to Hilary Mantel, the literati hard-hitters are in town as Manchester Literature Festival and UNESCO City of Literature turn up the gas.

Music

Lost in the middle distance between Christmas and spring, this funny old time of year has a saving grace: So. Many. Gigs.

Theatre in Manchester

Theatre

Stage adaptations of cult film classics, award-winning verbatim performance and charming slapstick. You’ll find all this and more in our guide to the best theatre in Manchester and the North.

Classical Music in Manchester and the North

We preview the standout classical music events and venues in Manchester.

Food and Drink in Manchester and the North

It’s time to find the best restaurants for the weeks ahead. Here’s our guide to the best Food and Drink in Manchester and the North

Tours and Activities

Expect thrills, informative discussion, politically charged tours and wobbly towns in this month’s guide of Tours and Activities.