Shabby Doll House has their Spring Edition online now.
There are many online zines out there but not all of them are necessarily good. However, there's one in particular that I've been following and meaning to write on for quite some time. Shabby Doll House, founded by L.K. Shaw this past summer, is an online publisher of various forms of literature and art. My first exposure to Shaw was her brilliant and witty Thought Catalogue article "If I Could Be Sweet." I don't usually like reading Thought Catalogue but this happened to be a really great piece of writing. Shabby Doll House is no exception – the most recent issue and those that preceded it show a great level of skill and introspection. And while this is a co-ed effort, it was nice to see the female perspective alive and well-represented.
Because Shabby Doll House is now a quarterly instead of a monthly publication, Issue #8 (Spring Edition) features more prose, poetry, and original artwork than ever before. The work in here struck me as both quiet and loud; echoing what it's like to be a millennial and how it feels to exist within silence and noise. Cassandra de Alba looks at pictures of happiness online, Luna Miguel invents new forms of cancer, Kelsea Basye writes about frogs at PetCo – these are a few amongst many things that happen in #8. Each of the 17 pieces of writing are accompanied by artwork that range anywhere from experimental photography to mixed media collages.
We were lucky enough to speak with Shaw on the why she started the publication, what she looks for with submissions, and what's new with the Spring Edition:
"Shabby Doll House started because I knew a lot of people who were making things that I felt excited about, but who didn’t have anywhere to publish their work. I wanted to create a space where writing and visual art could co-exist and complement one another, and I wanted it to be unpretentious, accessible and pretty to look at. I couldn’t find anything else that seemed to fit this description, so I decided to make it myself.
We accept submissions of prose, poetry & visual art. I tend to know straight away if a piece is ‘Shabby Doll’. I usually find that if I have to think about it, it probably it isn’t a good fit. This year, Sarah Jean Alexander (of Parlor Magazine) has joined Shabby Doll House as poetry editor, and we have been working together to create a cohesive collection for the Spring, so it has been cool to have her fresh perspective when reading submissions.
We are now a quarterly instead of monthly publication and as such, have had the luxury of a little more time to spend on certain details. We have been able to work with some new visual artists and have really raised the bar in terms of the art work, so I am very excited for people to see that. In terms of the writing, we are constantly trying to present work which we feel is engaging and relatable. The aim is really to make people feel less lonely."
Read Shabby Doll House's Spring Edition here.
Written by Diana Cirullo