The Open Arms Zine with Melissa Todd

As we wind down from The Open Arms Zine Live Launch at the June Bookie and start reeling up to the next, we’re catching up with our amazing readers. Interviewed before her reading, we chat with Melissa Todd about her Zine journey and how it led her to the Live Launch.

How did you find out about The Open Arms?
I found out about The Open Arms through an email, I think. I’ve been submitting to Margate Bookie from its inception, this is the third one we’ve been doing, and it’s just a tremendous opportunity to write something and be part of something locally. An artistic festival that’s tremendous and it’s a joy to be part of, it really is.


Why did you submit your piece?
Well, the theme was acceptance, and I thought an awfully long time about what that meant. Because I’m depressive and pessimistic, I thought I wanted to write about an acceptance of something grim and miserable; a horrible situation that you just have to suck up, so that was my feeling really. I know a lot of people have written optimistic jollies, but that’s not my vibe. I thought once I’d settled on that, it made it much easier to write something and work with it, and actually it came out almost fully formed.


What does your piece being in the Zine mean to you?
Having my piece published means the world. It never stops being brilliant, it really doesn’t. It’s such a joy to get the magazine, and see my name in print and see my piece in print. It looks so different and exciting, and all the shiny paper, it’s just magnificent, it really is. It’s such an honour. There’s so many magnificent pieces in it, so seeing my name among all those talented geniuses is huge, it really is.


How was your Zine experience?
My Zine experience has been very positive. From start to finish, really good communication, I have to say. I’ve been totally informed and felt part of it throughout the whole process. It’s great to see so much marketing around it, all the social media stuff. It makes you feel like you’re part of something that’s really huge and significant.


Would you submit again?
Definitely will submit again, you’re never going to get rid of me, I’m afraid. As long as you want me, I’ll be doing it. For sure, I’m really looking forward to the next Zine, whatever it might be. Keep at it.


Check out Melissa’s amazing piece in The Open Arms, and check out her reading at the Live Launch here.

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