New Writers Series: Janet Lalla-Hamblin

Protected: New Writers Series: Nick Hudson
January 25, 2020
Exploding Appendix is a project, which, through a myriad of media seeks to revitalise the avant-garde. With the aid of a plethora of artistic devises we seek to forge a vision for the future, uniting an experimental energy with a utopian yearning that pimples the skin with the potency of a renewed world. Yet, whatever grandiose ambitions may perturb our flesh and ignite a creative delirium, we, nonetheless, undertake the somewhat everyday task of artistic mutual exchange. Through our gatherings, our projects and general correspondences we engage in a process of sharing work, giving encouragement and offering feedback. Puncturing the solitary confines of artistic creation we have drawn sustenance from this process of interaction. Over the preceding months we have organised a number of projects and event which, from Manifesto Nights to Dadaist Cabarets, from ‘share and tell’ evenings to other forms of correspondences and collaborations, have garnered us with an eclectic collection of writings. With a humourless lack of imagination, let’s call this collection of writings our ‘New Writers Series’ — yes, let’s call it that! Throughout February we seek to celebrate the work of a selection of new writers, each, in some way, experimenting with literary form and innovative content. Yet, this collection of literary output holds together, not merely because of its artistic or technical innovation, but because it emerges, in some way or other, from the communal life of Exploding Appendix and the union of artists and researchers connected to it. Let February be the month of the writer, and let each word burst forth with unyielding vigour, drenching each page with the potency of literature eternal.

 

 

JANET LALLA-HAMBLIN: RULES FOR A COFFEE MOURNING – A WEEKLY GATHERING OF MINDS TO HOLD WAKE FOR MOMENTS PAST

 

9.26am sharp. The morning will begin with The Filtration. All members must gather in concentric circles and reflect on their strangest moment from the week preceding.
at 9.45am The Pouring will commence. All members must offer up their vessels for filling. Mugs and cups are contraband and will be confiscated by the committee for deletion. Recommended vessels for new members include Watermelon halves, the milk boxes they used to give out at break time in primary school, the wrapping paper from the last present your aunt sent you, or perhaps the left-hand ski-glove worn when you went sledding with your friends at age 14 3/4.
By 9.53am all initiates must have imbibed their first sip of coffee, before it cools too much. In the event that a member has not partaken of their coffee by this time, they must empty their vessel in the sink of the house they visited one Christmas eve when staying with the friend of a friend, stand on one leg while meditating on the first time they remember playing hopscotch, and return to the Coffee Mourning in disgrace 53 sessions after the morning of their downfall, and at the prescribed time of 9.45am offer up a vessel crafted from all the postcards they bought to send to their friends but ended up never using.
From 9.56 to 10.31, there will be freestyle time to travel the room – widdershins – maintaining hold of one’s vessel, and interacting with other members. The council recommends light conversation topics such as sharing accounts of ennui felt on New Years Day, discussing whether your life is going by at the pace you’d like it to be, deciding what your relationship with your partners’ parents would taste like if it were a fruit, and explaining how you each choose to manage the feeling that you are floating away into a different life when walking home alone in the early hours of the morning.
This Wild and Witless section of the Mourning will end neatly at 10.31am, with every present member jumping in the air at the same moment. After this members will return to their designated standing areas and recite the second nursery rhyme they ever remember hearing.
At 10.32, the council and committee will present Notices and Any Other Business. Notices will generally include drawing notice to how many minutes it’s been since you last called your best friend, the ratio of time each month you spend thinking about organising dinner with that one friend from work .vs. the amount of time you spend wondering if anyone actually wanted you to visit them when you went home last month, and underscoring the frequency with which your mind returns to that really good joke you made one Sunday Night.
At 11.57, Notices will conclude, vessels will be collected for display in the council chambers, and all members will be asked, in an enigmatic tone, to vacate the Church Meeting Rooms by 12 Noon in order to preserve the integrity of the Coffee Mourning. On their way out, members may be pleased to take a complimentary mint from the basket on the windowsill by the door, the flavour of which will remind them of when they showed an acquaintance they no longer talk to the benefits of leaving a candy cane to soak in hot chocolate during the festive season.
For all enquiries, please whisper into a running tap while doing the washing up you kept putting off, and only got around to right before your cousin visiting from abroad was about to come round.

 

 

* Janet Lalla-Hamblin is a producer, director and performer who likes to make audio dramas and can often be found reading comic books.