It is exactly one year ago today, the 20th January, that the very first article on The Story Bazaar web-site, Hello and Welcome to The Story Bazaar was posted. It was a report from the Battersea Decorative Arts and Antiques Fair, which, incidentally, is taking place again this week ( for those who might like to attend, it runs from 19th to 24th January ).
Since then we have had thousands of visitors (see Bazaar Numbers) and published our first books and audio-book. Story Bazaar posts are now circulated on twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+ and its images shared on Pinterest. The Story Bazaar 2015, a collection of its articles and blog posts, together with some new fiction by J.J.Anderson, was published on Amazon and Kindle just before Christmas.
The Story Bazaar now features in some unusual and surprising places. We learned recently that one of the Story Bazaar’s articles appears on a Swedish Professor’s Media & Political Studies course, alongside articles from The Guardian, about Spanish politics and the potential for change ( see A New Sort of Politics ). The Lonely Planet on-line also now features some of our articles about Jerez, especially those about flamenco and the Festival ( the Festival de Jerez II article is described as ‘passionate’ ). Neither of these references was sought, they have arisen because people have found, were interested in or enjoyed the articles. If any Story Bazaar readers come across our articles in other interesting places, please let us know.
Currently The Story Bazaar is, along side other writers, involved in organising a Literary Festival in South London for May 2016. Arrangements were well in hand when Phillip Pullman resigned as Chair of the Oxford Literary Festival in protest at that festival’s non-payment of authors. This is a long running battle, but it has been given new impetus by Pullman’s action and Amanda Craig and twenty-nine other authors have signed an open letter to The Bookseller, calling for publishers and authors to boycott festivals which don’t pay. Oops, bad timing for organising a festival. We’re hoping our little, unfunded, put-together-on-a-shoestring festival, can still go ahead. Watch this space.
To celebrate our birthday we are giving away ‘e’ copies of The Story Bazaar 2015 to all subscribers. If you haven’t signed up yet, do so now. The latest edition of The Story Bazaar 2015 ( including the posts running up to Christmas ) will be circulated with the February newsletter. Just complete the form on the sidebar of the web-site. If you don’t receive an acknowledgement, please let us know, using the comments box below (we have had technological difficulties in the past and not everyone who has signed up has received what they should have).
Thank you to The Story Bazaar’s readers, for coming back. And for reading and commenting. Thanks too to all the people on Linked In and social media who have wished us a Happy Birthday. I hope we will continue to entertain and engage in 2016 and, by this time next year, The Story Bazaar’s reach will have spread even wider. It will certainly have published more books.