Hello! Who are you and what are you up to?
Hello Dupe! My name is Roisin and I run and edit Ponytail, a self-publishd short story zine. It’s been going since Summer 2010. Each issue is based around a theme and writers, comic artists and poets send me things, each issue also comes with a complimentary mix CD too, and THAT’s on the theme as well. I’m big on themes. Apart from Ponytail I also write for myself as well as other publications and blogs. I’m also currently curating another couple of projects. When I’m not doing this I’m sitting in my knickers either reading or looking at pictures of dogs in costume on the internet- Freelancing rules!
How/why did you start?
I think I started it really as something I would like to write for and also read. It’s pretty tough to start writing and first of all find places to publish your work in print and second of all not be intimidated by the places you find! I wanted to create something that was fun and lo-fi for people to send stuff to. Something that was literary without being intimidatingly Serious with a capital S. The idea of themes came about because I thought it would be an interesting way to curate a lot of different voices and ideas, which I guess having a music CD is also an extension of.
How did you pick the name? Is it because a ponytail is the best hairstyle to read or write with?
Ha! I would never deny the practicality of a ponytail for literary pursuits, but the actual reasons are three-fold and a bit lame. Firstly, I came up with two other names that my friend mocked into non-existence. Secondly, while I was sulking about my two rejected names I was listening to Panda Bear and the song ‘Ponytail’ came on. Finally, (and I was perhaps scraping the barrel at this point) it’s meant to be a pun on tale and tail.
Can you tell us about your hair? Have you ever written about it?
5 things about my hair-
1.I didn’t have hair until I was about 2 so everyone thought I was a boy.
2.I’ve been cutting my own hair since I was 16.
3.My hair is essentially the colour of a penny.
4.I recently turned 26 and decided it was time to invest in a proper shampoo and conditioner to become a proper lady.
5. I have a fringe- but sometimes I pin it up and worry that my forehead is going to get dramatically sunburnt.
I haven’t written much about my hair but after reading the first issue of Dupe- I’m feeling pretty inspired to!
How do you connect hair and literature?
It’s not something I’d particularly thought about before now, but it’s definitely a really interesting way to explore a lot of different facets of a character as it’s something that is essentially very natural but styled and constructed to project a certain image of ourselves. People are quite conscious of their hair and precious about it, people touch or twirl their hair to convey different emotions, it’s a fun thing to write about.
What is coming for Ponytail?
Issue 4 is coming out at the end of the summer with a food theme. I’m collaborating with excellent screen printing company Built & Burnt on the cover which is rather exciting.
I’m also working on an exhibition/ publication called ” No-One Understands Me” which is going to be extracts from people’s teenage diaries.
Then maybe in the future I’d like to do a podcast or something if I can ever get over the total horror of listening to my own voice on record.
No One Understands Me: http://www.facebook.com/nooneunderstandsmelondon