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

Escape to the cinema this month. We round up the best new releases, special one-off screenings and retrospectives showing near you.

Christina Quarles at The Hepworth Wakefield

Exhibitions

Like the 58th Venice Biennale which opened earlier this May, our latest pick of exhibitions across the north also has a strong ecological bent.

Digital Dimensions at Eureka! Children playing in digital dimensions with light pillars

Families

All the most creative experiences for your family; inside, outside and in to space! The best family things to do in Manchester and the North.

Guy Garvey

Literature

August is quiet, but the books are back in September with one-off reading events, some much-anticipated launches and the return of the Northern Lights Writers’ Conference as we gear up for Manchester Literature Festival in October.

Music

Get ready for some massive shows in Manchester and the north this summer!

Theatre in Manchester

Theatre

We’re gearing up for the new theatre season – our guide this month features all the best performances happening now and over the next few weeks.

Food and Drink in Manchester and the North

Discover the best food and drink that the North has to offer in our expert guide to food and drink in Manchester and beyond.

comedy character

Tours and Activities

Challenge yourself to try something different this summer with our guide of Manchester based Tours and Activities. You’re bound to find something new to do in the city.