Christien Gholson's Blog Entries
"If work were so pleasant, the rich would keep it for themselves" - Mark Twain
In the previous four installments, I use the story of a bookseller in a ridiculous customer service situation as a frame to talk about the fate of those working in the service industry (1/3 of the economy), eventually expanding my ire to most work in general. Section 1: (What is a real job?) can be found here. Section 2 (the customer is always right?) can be found here. Section 3 ( the insidious happy customer service mask that hides the truth of work in the US) can be found here here . And Section 4 is the end of the bookseller’s story, along with question about the sustainability of an economy that treats so many workers like waste. Holy crap, this should be a book. Or a Michael Moore-ish type movie.
Strikes, New Fights
We are pleased to announce that Parthian Books and the Library of Wales will sponsor the Award for Outstanding Impact in Culture and the Arts for the 2015 Swansea University Impact Awards.
The Impact Awards celebrate the ways in which the University’s research makes a difference to society, the benefits it brings, and the influence it has on individuals, communities, industry, and policy development.
The Awards recognise outstanding impact across six categories, which are open to University staff, researchers at all career stages, as well as research groups, partnerships and projects.
The Impact Awards form part of a programme of activities supported by the University’s Impact Acceleration Account, sponsored by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council.
Chris Marshall, who project manages the Impact Acceleration Account, said: “The University is very grateful to the organisations that have chosen to sponsor the event and made it possible to recognise publicly the achievements of our researchers.
The Sunday Times EFG Short Story Award 2015 Readings (Part 1), Wednesday 22 April, 6-9pm
'The Glove Maker's Numbers' by Rebecca F John, read by Lesley Nicol
'Hungry' by Elizabeth McCracken, read by Eleanor Bron
'A Sheltered Woman' by Yiyun Li, read by Jing Lusi
Join us from 6.30pm to enjoy a complimentary glass of wine or soft drink before the reading. Doors open 6.15pm.
Venue: The Auditorium, Foyles Charing Cross Road
Tickets: £8/£5 (concessions).
The Asian Writer have interviewed Susmita Bhattacharya on her recently-released debut novel The Normal State of Mind.
Q. What inspired you to write the book?
I started the novel as a dissertation for my Masters in Creative Writing at Cardiff University. I knew that to be able to stick with the novel to completion, I’d have to write about a) something that I knew about and am familiar with, therefore it is set in Mumbai and Calcutta and explores friendship between women; b) look for answers to questions I had not asked earlier: homosexuality and its representation and acceptance in India and c) explore the concepts that are so important to me ie freedom of expression and freedom to live as individuals without having to conform to society (especially in the case of women).
Team Parthian were up in London for the Book Fair last week and spotted The Normal State of Mind was a Staff Pick in Foyles' flagship store. Hurrah! Here's a photo of it on the table there:
In the previous three installments, I use the story of a bookseller in a ridiculous customer service situation as a frame to talk about the fate of those working in the service industry. The first installment can be found here. The second installment can be found here. The third installment can be found here here. Things already discussed: what is a real job; the consequences of “the customer is always right” policy; rumination on unions; the perennial question – why do I have to pretend to be happy to serve you; and questions about the viability and sustainability of an economy that treats so many workers like waste. And so, onwards and upwards…
Ruth Mullineux reports on our spring celebration of the short story at Cameo Club, Cardiff…
Legend has it that the earliest recorded reference to April Fool’s Day dates back to Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales – believed to be the first collection of short stories published in English – in which ‘The Nun’s Priest’s Tale’ tells of a vain chicken tricked by a fox on the 32nd March (i.e. 1st April). True or not, this literary pedigree means 1st April was a fitting backdrop for Parthian’s latest event, a carnival of the art and versatility of the short-story form.
In the previous two segments, I relate the story of a hapless bookseller in a ridiculous customer service situation as a frame to talk about the fate of those working in the service industry (1/3 of the economy). The first installment can be found here. The second installment can be found here. Some things covered: the term “a real job”, the consequences of the policy “the customer is always right”, and ruminations on unions. And so, blah, blah, blah, let us continue:
Happy Happy Happy Happy
So, why do you need me to pretend that I’m happy to serve you?
Hello sunshine, hello Parthian readers. We're super happy to have made it through to the brighter times and festival season. The whole Welsh literary scene seems bursting to bloom into spring with a weekend of parties...
The Laugharne Weekend are opening their doors in Carmarthen today, Pyramid Scheme strikes a third time in a new home in Cardiff tomorrow and then Cardiff Bay gets Mexican with Fiction Fiesta & Wales Pen Cymru on the 17th. Plus we've more great reads and readings launching across the summer.
Hope to see you at some or all of the following!
For more information on these and to see what else we have coming up for you including book launches and events at Hay and Edinburgh festivals this summer, go to our events page and follow us on Twitter and Facebook.
In the previous segment, I began the story of a hapless bookseller as a frame to talk about the sad fate of those working in the service industry (1/3 of the economy), about how those behind the counters are perceived and treated. The first part can be found here. It includes the beginning of the bookseller’s story, along with ruminations on my former union organizing days, and the reigning corporate concept of service work as not being real work.
And so, the story continues:
The Customer is Always...