launched! Two websites and…

… a thousand ships. Today I just want to say a very big thank you.

As my regular readers (those of you who aren’t sunning themselves on a beach somewhere) may know, I’ve spent the past three weeks slavishly drudging at my computer, planting what I hope will be the seeds of next year’s income. I’ve set up a poetry workshop, which will meet in town once a week starting in a month. (There are also plans for more workshops, including one-off Saturday-type ones, and possibly a weekly beginners’ workshop in the New Year.) (And I am also available for bespoke one-to-one mentoring, feedback, manuscript editing, etc, which can all happen by email, so contact me if you think I can help you.)

I’ve started a PR & copywriting blog, called Text Pixels, and I’ve bedded it in so it contains much of the relevant content from Baroque in Hackney as well. (Some of it is edited afresh, or even re-written, to be more pertinent.) Text Pixels should be interesting to anyone who does copywriting, or who has to work with writers, designers, etc in their work – or simply anyone who is at work and feels a little frustratedly creative in their job! I mean, it’s like me. It’s about how we say things, how we communicate, and how we work.

I’ve revamped and largely re-written my main website,, so that it reflects my current offerings, activities and areas of interest.

I’ve set up a mailing list facility; the reward for signing up to my mailing list is that, once every two months, the text pixie herself will deliver to your inbox a cunning little newsletter, full of tips, tricks, cautionary tales and inspiration to carry you through the next two months of work. It’ll be a “Best of the Blog” – with some fresh stuff as well. So please do go and sign up.

I pretty much, for the reasons that afflict most lone people who need a website, did the websites myself: the main one, and the blog. It’s been a long saga and threw me face-to-face with the limits of my technical knowledge – indeed, the limits of how much technical knowledge I really feel I have space and time for – but I have prevailed. I think everything is working just great now. I set them up using customisable templates (from two different providers), and then customised the hell out of them to make them look the way I wanted. I did this by using site-specific systems, CSS editing, and internet resources (mainly for RGB/CMYK colour-matching, which doesn’t really exist). And on top of this, neither site’s identity would have been possible without the services of the two people who made my banners. I’m telling you this today because my Text Pixels pixie is now finally ready and up (delayed by swine flu; that can happen even to an elf) – and the main website is done done done! (I think.)


My own personal opinion is that both my banners are beyond beautiful. They both reflect exactly the spirit of play-in-work that I want to convey. It would be hard to say which I love more: my pixie, or my stripes. They both confirm my faith in – well, I don’t know what. Maybe in applied creativity. So, many thanks to the very talented Lynne “stripes and colour palette” Stuart (who also does illustration; her drawings & book designs are sinuous and lovely), and to the extremely funny cartoonist Kate “My Pink Half of the Drainpipe” Manson (who like me has multiple sites. And I met her on Facebook.)

So without having a Kate Winslet moment I’d just like to say thank you very much to these two people. And to the rest of you, this is a little advert for using the professional to do things you simply aren’t expert in. Sure I could have cobbled something together myself, but it would not have been professional. I’ve been involved in a lot of projects – in workplaces! – where have-a-go-ism results in scarily amateurish end results, which people then justify to each other, and send out, and then wonder why it isn’t working! I’ve seen community project managers lecture graphic designers about typography. It isn’t pretty. So I was lucky, because I knew what I wanted, and how to explain it; but I also knew when to ask, not tell.

And now, now that the sites are both up, I will get down to the hard work.

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