Review 2007: A Call For Entries

Before regular readers (and contributors) run to their calenders wondering where three weeks went to, I know I’m starting early this year. But if the lights can already be up in city centres and shops can already be selling their Christmas wares, I think it’s just about ok to be writing about this just under a week before Halloween, especially since posting usually starts on the first of December and that is only five weeks away. Plus, this isn’t about Christmas, but rounding out our year with a collective sigh.

It’s the fifth anniversary of these reviews and each year they’ve become more ambitious and interesting. Last year, over thirty of you were kind enough to send in questions which I was happy to answer. The most popular answer or article was the one about Torchwood, which was linked all over the place, and the Keira Knightley question was second, presumably because she's been a bit busy this year.

2007 is hopefully going to be somewhat similar to what we did in 2005. Then I invited people to describe a moment when they succeeded in doing something they've always wanted to do that year, which led some amazing writing on topics as diverse as getting a book published, karoke, visiting Ireland and New York, being invisible and having a baby. Keeping the overall subject seems to work so with that in mind, here is the title for Review 2007.

Review 2007: Home.

I’m asking people to write about what they thought was the most significant thing to that happened in the place where they live this year. This could be something that’s effected an entire city or town or village or just your street and it might be something whose effect only you seem to have noticed or everyone you know was talking about and even the rest of the world. The important thing is that you give it a local slant and how it felt to someone who actually lives there making the rest of us understand what it was like.

Here’s how I decided upon the idea: this year was Liverpool’s 800th birthday and next year the city has been chosen to be the European Capital of Culture. My original idea was to have commemorated that by asking people to write about my home town and what they thought of it as an outsider and from within, but then it occurred to me that Liverpool isn’t at the centre of the known universe and that asking everyone to write about that was just a bit too … what’s the word?

Wherever we’re living and working is the centre of our own universe and that we are actually looking out at that universe through the windows and screens that are there but the look isn’t often returned. I realised it would be far more interesting to offer people the chance to make the world look at the place where they live and what happened to it this year, hopefully producing a review of the tear which is both global and local, that stretches, for example, from El Paso to Baltimore to Freiburg to Brighton and back to Liverpool.

If this does sound like something you’d like to be involved in, please email me at at least to say that you'd like to write something and then try and get your submission in by the end of November if you can. There will be a prize for any that are shown (or at the very least a link back to your own website if you have one). Don’t worry if you think the place where you live has already ‘gone’. Five people who’ve actually found somewhere to live in London aren’t going to look at the place in exactly the same way are they?

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