This Saturday, November 18 we are looking forward to partying with a couple dozen of our favorite writers and photographers, editors and web mistresses. From 5-8pm we will be recognizing the contributions of our mostly volunteer staff with some awards and food and drink. You will have a chance to meet and greet them and to participate in an open mic. The event will take place at Listen & Be Heard Poetry Caf?, at 818 Marin Street in Downtown Vallejo. It’s free. For more information you can call 707-554-4540.
Now entering our fourth year of publishing, Listen & Be Heard Arts Culture and Entertainment Magazine posts the most extensive entertainment calendars for events this side of the Bay Bridge. We also publish thoughtful and well written reviews and interviews of local theatre, music, visual arts and more, written by people who actually went to the show, read the book, looked at the painting hanging on the wall. We have some unique columnists sharing helpful information with you that you won’t find anywhere else, because they write exclusively for us. We are a great thing for Vallejo to claim as its own. My only wish for the year ahead is for our publication, both print and web, to be put to the good use for which it was created.
I know that you appreciate our contributors and the work that they do, because I can see that you have been visiting their web pages, signing up for their xml feeds, and writing letters to them. You can now also download our monthly print edition in PDF format, for those of you who really do prefer your computers for your news. Even if you visit the website regularly, I encourage you to take a look at the PDF file of the print version which includes many local advertisers who don’t all advertise on our website, but who do have valuable services to offer.
As the Editor of this manifestation, I am poised in a good position to push for what we have been advocating all along, cooperation, some planning ahead, and plenty of elbow grease. It is a self-created position that has evolved from the first day of sitting at home at my computer and sending a one-page PDF file to Digital Copy to make 100 copies. Today I sit in my office in Downtown Vallejo and can look back and say that the publication has evolved into a monthly magazine with full color, and 32 pages of which we currently print 6000 copies for distribution to more than 300 locations. It is also now a website receiving thousands of visits each week. In the last three years I have made personal connections with many of the people who are making things happen. We have covered their activities in our publication. Many artists and groups and restaurants too, now use quotes from Listen & Be Heard in their publicity packages. There are still many more who don’t know yet that we will be approaching them, and exposing them to an ever-growing audience seeking alternatives and originality.
As we celebrate, I am looking forward to treading down a collective path that has never been visited before. I will be reaching beyond the pages of my editorials to make connections with the arts organizations surrounding us on all sides, always with the goal of stimulation and growth in culture and the arts here where we live. Believe it or not, it makes economic sense to support the arts with an infrastructure that makes it possible for its practitioners to not only survive, but thrive. My quest is to get people to work together to put a framework in place that is inclusive, cooperative and profitable too. Look for Listen & Be Heard to be stepping out beyond the page, beyond the doors of our Caf?, to be doing things in a bigger way than ever before.
Better yet, don’t look for it, be a part of fulfilling the promise of diversity. That’s the beauty of Listening and being Heard too. Create some activity on your own or make yourself known here at Listen & Be Heard. Whatever your skills may be we will be happy to put them to good use.
Please come out on Saturday afternoon, and introduce yourself to me while you’re enjoying yourself. Have a cup of the best coffee in Vallejo and share your favorite poem during the open mic. If you can’t make it to the physical event, then write in to let all of our contributors know that you appreciate them.
Wishing each of you Peace and Poetry