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

Theatre in Manchester and the North

Theatre

Queer Contact Festival, stunning physical theatre and intimate in-the-round performance top our eclectic list of drama, comedy and dance this month.

Classical Music

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

Food and Drink

Start 2023 as you mean to go on, with the best restaurants and bars in Manchester and the North.

Cinema

Black and white classics and a Tarantino-scripted pop-thriller are amongst our Valentine’s themed picks for February.

Exhibitions

The world of art and exhibitions never quite stops, so we have lots of new shows to look forward to at the start of 2023.

The Spongebob Musical at the Manchester Opera House

Families

New year, new start, and what better way to welcome in 2023 than by planning and experiencing all sorts of exciting family events in Manchester and the North?

Gwendoline Riley. Photo by Adrian Lourie

Literature

From local writing to international talent, we have heaps of online launches and in real life readings not to mention some extra special festival events coming our way in live literature land.

Music

More brilliant gigs appear on the horizon as we inch further into 2023.

Tours and Activities

Eat your way through Ancoats, build a miniature eco-system and immerse yourself in visual art in this month’s tours and activities guide.

Things to do right now

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Activity Until 8 February 2023, from £170.00

Drawing course with Nina Hunter

Music Until 16 February 2023, from £9.50

Donna Candy at SOUP

vegan super club
Activity Until 17 February 2023, from £50

Supper Club at the Vegetarian Society Cookery School

Exhibitions Until 18 February 2023, FREE

The Confessional at HOME

Queer Contact 2023
Comedy Until 18 February 2023,

Queer Contact Festival 2023

PUSH Festival 2023 at HOME
Festivals Until 18 February 2023,

PUSH Festival 2023 at HOME

The Singing Mermaid at Waterside
Families Until 19 February 2023, from £14.00

The Singing Mermaid at Waterside CANCELLED

Activity Until 23 February 2023, from £59.99

Write Like A Grrrl: Ignite

Activity Until 25 February 2023, from £13

Elizabeth Gaskell’s House Tour

Fairy Tales at Z-Arts
Families Until 26 February 2023, from £3.00

Fairy Tales at Z-arts