Annotated Blogroll


If you know her through this blog it’s for her poetry, but she’s a brilliant prose writer too. Her pieces on depression and motherhood - accessible, insightful, honest - are amongst the best things on the New Zealand Web.

A community of New Zealand bloggers, captained by Russell Brown: the blogfather, ‘Il miglior blogger’ (T.S. Eliot). Without wishing to single anybody else out, I’m going to single out Emma Hart who does important work on sexual politics and other things, and who in a more perfect world would have no business being as funny as she is.

Dougal’s endlessly fascinating and stubbornly militant perspective on literature and film, with a strong focus currently on Japan and Korea.

Merc’s art and poetry. One of those rare blogs that defines the boundaries of the form.

And this is another one. But I need to discuss the whys and wherefores in a proper review.

‘Come for the charm, stay for the dungeonry.’ No, wait, that’s not right. Philip Challinor is a writer, critic, satirist and commentator. There are many reasons why I think you should read him ­– I wrote down some of them here ­– but he keeps coming up with new ones.

We are blessed with a number of good satirists in New Zealand, but Lyndon’s far and away the sharpest. His true reverence for the tradition shines in posts such as the Victory Parade for John Key, and he does fine work these days in Werewolf too.

Author of the fundamental Militant Modernism. His writings on architecture have quietly changed the way I look at built spaces in relation to our politics.

I came to Nina Power’s blog once her longer essays had begun to be published elsewhere, but it remains a key for accessing some of the best criticism, scholarship and plain old fine writing that is available on the Web. Nina is also the author of One Dimensional Woman, a book you simply must read – otherwise I’ll come to your house and steal half your socks.

One of the sharpest cultural critics around. Also author of Capitalist Realism, which, if you care at all for the remaining half of your socks... I don’t think I need to finish that sentence.

The home of salvagepunk, surplus life and ‘total wet fecundity, illimitable hybrid biopower, interspecies interpenetration, an absence of agriculture or organized production, and trees that have developed an information network for which Google would happily displace many millions of animist, lithe, bare-assed tribes.’ One of the most genuinely exciting writers around.

The reason why I've taken to checking my Google Reader from the bottom of the list.

In the category of web writers (which includes the likes of Andries du Toit) who post seldom and when they do you know it's going to be great. This post on #solidarity may be my favourite of his - clear, passionate, political, purposeful.

Author of my favourite year-end post of 2008 and all-round terrific blogger.

Accounts for 85% of the country's output of political and historical bloggage. A national treasure.

Adding to my growing collection of clever, articulate, disaffected Britons. Also, the person who introduced me to the Seventies, Eighties and Nineties blog And What Will Be Left of Them?, Faces on Posters/Too Many Choices, and Up Close and Personal.

Home of Development-the-movie, of asking the question how can we ensure that 50% of the films are directed by women, beginning in New Zealand, and of this beautiful post on the 25th anniversary of The Bone People getting the Booker Prize.

Is there such a thing as a blogger crush? Well, I have one for the fantastically caustic Queen of Thorns. If somebody had  said of me that 'it is shamelessly obvious [I] don’t value communication as a tool for building understanding', I'd have it tattooed on my forehead. Also blogs at The Stroppery, along with Boganette and Emma Hart and others.

The gentle and wonderful Stephen Judd. In spite of the blog’s title, he vents very little. He’s also a constant source of blogly suggestion of pinpoint precision - I owe him half my bookmarks.

Where you can chart the transformation into a model suburbanite of a person who used to vent against suburban life all.the.time. I consider this one of the most satisfying experiences on the Web today.

Stephen and Che on how to live within your means. Well, at least their means, I guess.

‘Ethnomusicological eating east of everywhere’. A good example of just how right Stephen will steer you.

I no longer read regularly any Italian blogs, which is just inexcusable. Except for this one, a recent discovery. Giorgio is an old friend from the heady days of it-cultura-fantascienza, it seems appropriate that I should try to work my way back into the native fold from his fine blog.

A community of New Zealand feminist bloggers. Includes Deborah, of In a Strange Land most deserved fame.

An American writer in London. Manages to be utterly self-absorbed and at the same time relentlessly interesting and enjoyable. Another form-defining blog.

I have a thing for self-explanatory blog titles. (Like the title of my blog, you know.)

Jack Ross's blog about poetry and writing.

Bronwyn Lloyd's craft blog. Bronwyn and Jack also run the remarkable Pania Press.

In between watching every film commercially released in Wellington, Dan Slevin finds the time to pick fights with Fritz Lang and interview Richard Jenkins. Not a bad gig.

Philip Matthews’ film blog, as illuminating as it is sporadic. This old entry will give you some idea, and here he is more recently on Inception.

Accessible philosophy blogs aren’t exactly a dime a dozen. I like this one...

...and, closer to home, this one.