Over the next two weeks,  we interview the capable ladies and gents speaking and performing at DOAS’ Issue #5 ‘FOOD’ launch on 12 May.

Exciting, new and independent — Rag & Bone Man Press will be putting on quite the show for you. The Jane Austen Jelly Wrestle is a collaboration between Rag & Bone Man  and Death of a Scenester. Watch Virginia Woolf vs. Helen Garner, Jane Austen vs. Sylvia Plath, Haruki Murakami vs. Charles Dickens, Ernest Hemingway vs. Jonathan Safran Foer contend for the “Most Powerful Male/Female Writer” title in a pit of red jelly. Enough said.

What do you think is Rag & Bone Man’s unique contribution to the independent publishing scene?
Rag & Bone offers a fresh, shiny new home for aspiring writers! We’re fairly unique in that we grew out of a grassroots passion for creating comfortable spaces to air stories unknown to wider markets, and which the writer might have been a bit shy to share. Think of us as the old man with the wheelbarrow, picking up scraps of humour, foul dialogue and rampant prose, and tossing them into a collective literary gallimaufry. There is nothing we won’t look at or encourage, and we want to bring it to the masses. We decided to take our wheelbarrow online, and so our website became a forum for publishing some of these fabulous works. We’ve started with short stories, with the aim to move into larger texts, creating ebooks and printed publications down the track. Our motto is ‘boutique until further notice’, and our writing salons are still held across Melbourne, encouraging writers to scribe ever onwards!

RNBM began as a writing salon which has grown into an online and print publishing press. You also have your own book project – Soup Van Stories. Can you explain a little bit about each of each of these?
The Press began as a creative writing group aptly named ‘The Rag and Bone Man Salon’ in 2008, meeting every three months for wine and creativity. Members generally read out short stories or poems on a topic or idea, such as Vampire Fiction, South-eastern Australian Gothic, or our upcoming subject: ‘What would Branwell Bronte do?’ (Besides sip laudanum). Our aim was never to critique work that was read out, but to encourage members to write and to share their writing in an informal and friendly atmosphere. The founders, Dan Christie, Keira Dickinson, and Hannah Cartmel, are all arts enthusiasts, employed in publishing and theatre ventures, and are welcoming, a little bit silly and intent on innovation when it comes to spreading a good story.

By 2011 we had been running the salons for a few years and lamenting over the wasted talent of our members. We developed the idea to start a publishing house that published new works not only created for the Salon, but also by exciting and undiscovered writers in the wider community. And so, a sheesha, a martini swill, and a handshake later, the curtains of our Press opened officially in late 2011. Since then we have been receiving stories and projects from thrilling hopefuls that we are overjoyed about!

We have also embarked upon a community project, working with one of Melbourne’s soup vans to collate an anthology of stories from a group of ‘vannies’ and ‘streeties’ about life on the streets and in commission housing. What better way to begin Rag & Bone’s journey, than working with the ‘everyman’ to make his/her voice heard?

There is a strong community history imperative with your upcoming project Soup Van Stories. How did the idea for this project come about?
The Soup Van Project fits into Rag & Bone’s desire to publish stories that often go unheard. Rag & Bone co-founder Keira Dickinson began volunteering on the van last year, and there she met an enthusiastic archivist of tales long past, as well as a plethora of volunteers and patrons connected to the van. The people she met inspired her with their humour, life and understanding of true suffering. With the help of The Rag and Bone Man Press, their story will be brought to a wider forum so that others can see what happens in the backstreets of the city. There are so many opportunities like this that Rag & Bone foresees, in working with community groups in the future, where stories exist without a way to express them. We welcome project ideas and proposals along these lines, and hope to work with many more groups who have something to say.

Where do you see yourselves in a few years?
Berlin. Failing that, we hope Rag & Bone will be continuing to source, promote and publish new writing by previously undiscovered authors – online and through print-on-demand and e-book publications. We will also be continuing to encourage creativity in writing and everyday life by enlarging our Salon, holding it at public venues and allowing more creative kiddies to get involved.

We aim to publish writing online and in print that resonates with communities as well as individuals – maintaining our vision of providing literary outlets to people who may feel reluctant to make their voices heard.

What antics can we expect at the launch on 12 May?
A literary feast of gelatinous proportions! We want everyone to be ringside at our ‘Great Jane Austen Jelly Wrestle’ to cheer on their favourite writer for the much-coveted title of ‘World’s Most Powerful Author’. We can’t promise it will be a clean fight, but what we can promise is exceptional entertainment.

The Rag & Bone Man Press Official Launch is on Friday, 25th May at The Butterfly Club, 204 Bank St, South Melbourne. Experience colourful beverages and live readings by Rag and Bone Man Press authors.
Rag & Bone Man Press Facebook

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Champion Jelly Wrestlers! We want YOU as a contestant in The Great Jane Austen Jelly Wrestle – the ultimate in extreme culinary sports – in celebration of the launch of Issue #5 FOOD of DOAS! We seek 4 gents and 4 ladies keen to don the costumes (provided) of famous writers past and present  and go head to head in a pool of goo on the night of the launch. Winners win prizes and claim the title of “World’s Most Powerful Author”. Email the DOAS team at to express your interest before 1 May 2012. The Great Jane Austen Jelly Wrestle is a collaboration,  exclusively brought to you by the good people at The Rag and Bone Man Press

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WHEN: Saturday 12 May, 7 PM – 2 AM
WHERE: Yarra Sculpture Gallery, 117 Vere St, Abbotsford,

Aching for something tasty to sate your appetite as the cooler months approach? DEATH OF A SCENESTER are pleased to announce the launch party for Issue #5: FOOD.

Our  contributors have been slaving away in their authorial kitchens; boiling, brewing and baking literary and visual delights to satisfy the most voracious of readers. So lock in the date, we look forward to seeing you at our fabulous new launch pad in Collingwood.

7 – 8 PM: FêTE GAMES!


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New stockists

Issue #3 Space ad Issue #4 Animal are now available at the combined stores Collectors Corner-Missing Link, Broken Glass Records, and Sticky Institute — get in there are support local record and book stores. 🙂

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CLOSED – Death of a Scenester is seeking submissions for ISSUE #5: FOOD!

Here at the Death of a Scenester HQ we are big fans of food. The usual DOAS meeting is accompanied by at least three types of cheese, so we felt it was most natural to dedicate an issue to one of the world’s favourite pastimes.


More than pleasure lurks below this subject matter. We live in a time where food shortages are a reality for big parts of the developing world. We are also subject to changing government controls on the way we grow and share food. What place does the Corporation have in all this? What is your opinion?
From the downright dirty, earth covered and deformed, to the clean and chemically treated—we once again require your delicious wordiness on the matter.
We encourage you to go forth—create, collaborate, write, draw and submit to our fifth issue.
Take the word food wherever you want to. Think outside the box in terms of your piece, its genre and your comfort zone. Be daring. We look forward to every art and word feast that will soon be appearing in our HQ inbox. Each piece should be no longer than four A5 pages (about 1200-500 words).
Send us a proposal for your piece by Monday, 30 January. All we require at this stage is a few lines telling us the direction you’d like to head and what genre you are going to tackle. From there, we will let you know whether your piece will be included in Issue #5, with final submissions due on Friday, 9 March.
We eagerly await your tasty proposals…
Ali, Megan, Katie & Shalini

Important dates

Proposals due: Monday, 30 Jan 2012

Final submissions: Friday, 16 March 2012

Launch: Friday, 11 May 2012

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New Stockist – Wooly Bully

Issue #3 — Space and Issue #4 — Animal are now stocked at Wooly Bully – 104 Errol Street North Melbourne. Go in there and get a copy and grab a bagel and a record whilst you’re there. It’s worth it.

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Animal launch

Well, well…what a great launch we had on October 29, 2011 at The Parlour in Preston.The weather was terrible but it did not deter the 180 plus people who turned up. The life-sized blow up elephants were a great decoration at the entrance of the venue. Special thanks go to Brian at the Parlour for being so accommodating, Ben from Horror Sleaze Trash for doing the photo shoot, BJ Morriszonkle and Pony Face for being the live music entertainment, Raul Sanchez and Bodie Jarman for DJing, Matt and Clay for being sound techs, Jeff Sparrow for giving the rousing speech on the importance of little magazines and officially launching the new ‘animal’ issue, all the helpers with the bar/BBQ, and also Kate Griffin who took some great photos of the night along with the photo booth with costumes designed by Two French. You can check out the photos on our facebook page or flickr page.

If you were unlucky enough not to make it to the launch and so didn’t get a copy of the new issue, check out our stockists to see where you can get one. BUT for the next month (Nov 16-Dec 22) we have a special offer – if you email us at with the request for a copy of Issue 4, we will give you a copy of Issue 3 absolutely free! Think of those xmas presents you’ve been trying to figure out :).

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To stir up some launch frenzy, over the next few weeks we interview the people who will be speaking and performing at DOAS’ Issue #4 ‘ANIMAL’ launch. We selected these folk to be a part of the reformatted launch program, as we felt they best represented our contributors: sassy, politicised and in-your-face.

For the final instalment of the launch interview series, we speak to Si, from the dark beauty that is Pony Face. Here’s when you thank this city’s broody skies for festering such talent. Lucky for you, they’re playing the DOAS launch tomorrow, Saturday 29 Oct 2011. See you all there…

How important is writing and literature to what you do as a musician? Do they cross over for you? Literature and music come together like a bass line and a beat—they enhance and embrace each other. You can have one without the other, I suppose, but there’s elements of either of them in the other, for instance you can hear stories, settings, situations and characters in instrumental bands like Dirty Three and Silver ray, God speed and Michael Nyman. There are also rhythms and percussion ascensions in Al Ginsberg, George Orwell.

What/who are your biggest literary influences? Can we hear any of them in your songs?
I hope so, that would be good. I rip off lines all the time, on the last album, I stole a good line from Rumble fish, it’s in the song ‘Devil’ and if you pick it you get a prize. On the record we’re in the middle of at the moment, there is a William Burroughs-ish mode— on the song ‘Disco cops.’ I didn’t notice it at the time, [but]re-reading Junkie, I noticed all these cool character names and this low-down swing groove that’s ominous and dangerous…there are similarities.

We are excited that you are playing at the launch of ‘ANIMAL’ – will you have any particularly animalistic overtones to your set on the night?
Doubt it.

I’ve always wanted to have a tail.

Anthony (bass) has always seemed apish to me.

What is your favourite lyric, either of one of your songs or someone else’s, and why?
I enjoy misinterpretation, I think it is essential to art, and I’ve only recently been converted to putting written lyrics on album sleeves, but I suppose you can choose to read ‘em or not. Gillian Welsh’s words are choice cuts. I get a little more out of Revelator each time I hear it.

I have no idea what the story in ‘Gigantic’ by Kim Deal is about, but her voice is so seductive—no idea who or what she’s talking about. There are so many possibilities.

Most of the Pixies songs I have no idea what they are about…I love them, I don’t need to know what anyone else thinks they are about.

Favourite lyric this week is Obla dee obla da.

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To stir up some launch frenzy, over the next few weeks we interview the people who will be speaking and performing at DOAS’ Issue #4 ‘ANIMAL’ launch. We selected these folk to be a part of the reformatted launch program, as we felt they best represented our contributors: sassy, politicised and in-your-face.

Sisters Simone and Elyse Morahan are the creators of indie clothing label Two French. Vinyl-bag bomber jackets, 7” tutus, a dress made from playing cards—and if that ain’t enough for your recycled-couture hankering, ultra-desirable French silhouettes might have to do. They make the kind of clothes that make you not want to tell anybody about, so you can rock up looking kick-ass and leave bitches coveting. Put on a prop, courtesy of Two French and get your mug snapped by Kate Griffin at the photo booth, this Saturday 29 Oct 2011 at the DOAS Issue #4 ANIMAL launch.  

Where and when do you sew?
We have a room in our home which we call our ‘studio’.  We try and work in there after we come home from our respective jobs …but instead we usually end up dancing around, drinking and cracking hilarious sleep-deprived immature jokes.

What do your momma and papa make of your fashion pursuits?
They’re very supportive folks, and sometimes help us out when we’re all out of ideas on how to put something together. Our Momma sews and our papa builds roads. I think somewhere along the line we got things mixed up which is why we’re now trying to build a dress made out of a bridge and a bridge made out of a dress.

Was making clothes out of vinyl bags and playing cards just a whimsical coincidence?
Both pieces were inspired by different circumstances: one from an artist invitation for a themed exhibition and the other from a stupid conversation that turned into a stupid idea and a stupid project.

The playing cards dress was brought on from a Saint One Twenty ‘Alice in Wonderland’ themed exhibition. As people were dressing up we didn’t want to make an exhibition costume that would blend into the crowd—it didn’t.

On the other hand, the vinyl bag jacket was a stupid conversation. We love Thornbury Records, and we had so so many vinyl bags. Joking or not, it’s hard to tell, Clay from Thornbury Records suggested we make something. Within the 30 minutes it took us to get home, we had the whole thing sorted.

And where in the hell did that skirt come from, you know, the one on the blog? It’s bloody beaut!
That all depends on which skirt you’re talking about. We have a 7” vinyl tutu (see above in stupid conversation explanation) that went along side the vinyl bag jacket.

Or we have an actual skirt made from fabric! That came from everywhere. Our Alfred Hitchcock love, a random two month feather obsession, a stumble into another direction and of course G&T.

Who is the risk taker? Do you fight?
 I think we’re both risk takers, but we take turns, or just try and push it onto someone else. Just ask our lovely model for the vinyl bag jacket. And do we fight?!  Are you kidding, of course!! But it’s mostly stupid.

What can we expect to see at the DOAS launch?
You can expect us to supply a gateway, to unleash your inner animal, converse in stupid conversations and probably make some sleep deprived, immature, ‘Be Your Own Pet’ jokes.

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