HOW FOTS BEGAN
Back in 2019, we were both keen to collaborate on a new project and hit on the idea
of an independent magazine, which would bring together our skills of writing, editing, and design. Like many people, we have always enjoyed good talks with friends, sharing tales and experiences, past and present – so we decided to make a magazine that reads like a conversation. Friends On The Shelf seemed like the perfect name to communicate our concept.
We published Issue One in May 2020, financed entirely by hundreds of small donations from our Founding Friends. We were encouraged by the enthusiastic response to Issue One and we are now delighted to have published Issue Two in November 2020.
We are still completely independent and funded by our readers, and a few small independent businesses who have bought advertising space in Issue Two. Our contributors generously write without remuneration (though we hope this will change as we grow).
We have received a wealth of fabulous material and Issue Three will be published in Spring 2021, with Issue Four and Five planned for next Summer and Autumn.
Rachel Swann & Vick Fullick
I worked for many years as a writers’ agent and in the development of TV comedy. In 2019 I embarked on a new challenge with Friends On The Shelf, bringing to it my experience of writing, reading and editing scripts, and nurturing new talent.
Since finishing my undergraduate degree in English this summer, I have continued doing what I enjoyed most at university: editing and writing my own material for not only Friends on the Shelf but my own online project, theviralpapers.com
I am a graphic designer and letterpress printer working from home in London. I divide my time between the computer screen and my letterpress print workshop, housing Adana presses, cases of type and a small treadle press. I print cards, invitations and small books.
Strategy & Planning
I bring my knowledge of planning and strategy to the FOTS team, as before becoming a self-employed artist, I worked as a business manager in the design industry. I now work in pen & ink and lettering in my north London home studio. inkpotandpen.com.
I began my career as an advertising copywriter, before moving into journalism and children’s publishing. For the past 15 years, I've worked as an author, editor and creative consultant on The Reading Agency's annual Summer Reading Challenge in libraries.
I work as an illustrator from a smart new shed at the bottom of my garden in the picturesque borough of Hackney. Some of my work can be seen at childrensillustrators.com
(Ann drew the pen portraits for the magazine and the website).