Monday, July 25, 2011

Promoting and Publishing

I have been very fortunate this year to have articles and works published in a number of journals. Each of them has come about in a different way and the projects and articles are varied; as are the journals themselves.

I recently posted about the Australian Book Arts Journal - and an article I wrote that was linked to the theme Paper: the connecting thread and which included some images of my work which combine paper and thread.

A few weeks ago I received my latest copy of Colophon, the journal of the Australian Society of Calligraphers.  In this issue, I had a profile with lots of images of my work, a story about one of my Cartography pieces and an article explaining how I rust paper. One of my Cartography pieces also appeared on the back cover.

It's funny how you put in train, or respond to something else months apart, and then due to production timelines, they all appear around the same time.

I was approached by the editors of Colophon a while ago and asked to contribute some photos and an article which I did. They then mentioned they liked my Cartography pieces and could I explain a bit about them, which led to a discussion about rusting paper so I include my recipe as well. All of which got included!

© Colophon, front cover, detail, Yves Lettermes work
My profile story and spread - © Colophon
My article about Cartography I - © Colophon
Some time last year I approached the journal Bound and Lettered to see if they were interested in running a story on our A Letter a Week project. In March this year I got the go ahead and sent them some words and images of the finished second alphabets from 2010.  They made a selection, and published the article.

In a weird and wonderful connection, back in March I was approached by John Neal of John Neal Booksellers to see if I could send him some more images of my work. He had seen them in the beautiful ASC book Words Work and wanted to promote the book in Bound and Lettered. I dutifully sent them off, and then we took off to the Territory and I forgot all about it.

So what a delight to discover this issue of Bound and Lettered contains the article I wrote about ALAW - with images of some fabulous alphabets including Barry's and Ken's (pretty cool seeing as how I didn't make the selection!) and another article which features my own work. Wow!

©Bound & Lettered - cover and article/images Fiona Dempster
This is new territory for me and I have been reflecting on what I've learned so far, including:
  • it's OK to put your art out there for selection in books which call for work that is suited to you (Words Work); 
  • if you are selected, this publication can lead to other opportunities (like John Neal and BandL);
  • if you have an interesting or different project or piece - write to people and ask if they would be interested in publishing an article (ALAW and BandL);
  • If you see calls for article on a theme you can connect with - contact folk and ask if they are interested in getting a piece from you (ABAJ);
  • run a project, blog and interact, and folk might ask you to contribute to their journal (Colophon and me); 
  • it's a good discipline to sit down and think about your work or project and write about it in an interesting way;
  • once you are published, you are more confident to approach people for articles; and
  • taking the time to seek out and follow up opportunities, can be extremely gratifying when you see the results!
I probably could have made this two blog posts - there are lots of words - but the stories were linked and made interesting connections, and made me ponder how it all came about.. 


  1. How wonderful to be published in magazines and periodicals that are so specialised Fiona. A great recognition of your work and ideas. Your post has reminded me to check out Bound and Lettered. I have them all from the first issue but see I am now missing the latest one with your article in it and the previous edition. Time to get buying online to keep up with things!

  2. Well done Fiona. Very gratifying to see your work published in such prestigious publications.

  3. Fiona, I am so happy for you! Such great news and so nice of you to share this experience here. Congratulations!!!

  4. Good work, Fiona. Congratulations!

  5. congratulations on being published!! and thank you for the tips ... it's been at the back of my mind, but have yet to do anything about it ... i do need to be more organized!!

  6. Fiona, this is wonderful news. I do like how things are sent out into the world and then they all materialize at the same time, your very own personal media blitz and you could not have constructed it better yourself! Recognition well deserved, and more will surely come from it. Congratulations!

  7. Hearty congratulations Fiona, on all that you have accomplished and learned this year! Amazing things have happened and as Gabriella says, you have been in the middle of your own media blitz! Wonderful news and just wait til next and Barry are an inspiration!!

  8. I have no excuse for my tardiness - except I've been travelling and lost track of my blog posts!

    Thank you all for your kind words. I wrote this post mostly with a sense of wonder of how could a girl like me end up here - and with a sense that I should also promote my big 'wins' occasionally...a mixed kind of bag.

    Lesley - I hope you get a copy of B&L soon; it's a great mag as you must know if you have all the copies since it began!

    Ronnie, Jo, Annie ad Anna - thank you all.

    Luthien - I think I was keener to ponder out loud how it happened and what I had learned than I was to do the self-promotion part.

    G/TT - yes I honestly couldn't have orchestrated a blitz like this if I'd tried!

    Patti - thanks so much - it has been a lot about learning...


I appreciate your thoughts and comments; thanks for taking the time.