solution 1

solution 2

a living,[a][b] 



for publishing the humdrum[c][d] way

we are seeking methods, outputs, forms, experiments towards[e]

publishing as practice.

publishing as a community[f][g], shared, collective resource.

publishing as relational.

publishing as doing, ongoing.

publishing as the act and art of making public[h][i].[j]

through publishing, we endeavour[k] to

*make and work with printed matter (currently our preferred form is the pamphlet publication)[l][m][n] of all shapes, styles, textures, subjects, themes, disciplines

*explore what publications can be and can do

*open up each stage of the publishing process to create a communal space and structure[o][p] for collaborations, readers, designers, printers, wider networks, etc.

*push the threshold of who gets to make publications[q][r],

(not just as something more accessible, but also more desirable for wider groups of readers, writers and makers, especially those who have not yet considered publishing[s])

*understand, learn from, contribute towards (critically, positively, collaboratively) the existing and established independent art[t] publishing field

*collaborate wherever, whenever, with whomever[u][v][w][x][y], in any possible way.[z]

*activate and expand styles, methods, and acts of readings and readership[aa]

*produce publications that people want to,[ab][ac] and will, read again and again, and that bring joy,[ad][ae][af] insight, and instances of reflection[ag]—all with meaningful impact[ah] 

we wish to build this using a commons-based model

*by thinking of how the resources used and produced through publishing can be shared and maintained by the many

*by exploring how to expand and open up each stage of the publishing process with collectivity, accessibility, approachability and sustainability in mind* [ai]

*by creating a model that is open to be adopted, adapted, used, shared, disrupted and reshaped by the many

we seek to establish and maintain a broad ecosystem of readers and writers, that stand in for….

*when a person or collective contributes [aj][ak][al]to the publishing process, they are invited into the publishing ecosystem for the long-term

*the ecosystem is maintained by different stands: a newsletter, digital copies of all publications emailed directly as they are published, regular meetups[am][an] and exchanges such as open[ao] crits[ap][aq] and feedback sessions, maintenance meetings, long-term connections and collaborations[ar]

*this does not only apply to an internal ecosystem, but also an external one, including forming relationships with other publishers, bookshops and local services, and using and promoting these same services

*to print locally, distribute locally[as][at], and organise events with local organisations and initiatives, as much as possible

this ecosystem of readers, writers and makers

*typically begin with those already engaged in art publishing and the wider arts fields, here we think of artists, designers, researchers, academics, architects, fellow publishers, and the many who sit in between.

*however, this will coincide with a community engagement and outreach model

this means working directly with, then printing and placing publication copies into venues directly related to a given community[au], to engage with readers outside the usual sphere of bookshops[av][aw], as well as connecting with new potential authors

*alongside an open admission policy, to work with anyone who wishes to publicise thoughtful, engaging, meaningful, reflective critical work

saying no, saying not right now[ax][ay][az][ba]

*practising saying no, or operating an “on hold” system, when we do not have the capacity[bb][bc], or do not feel that the project aligns with our values[bd][be][bf], even if later on in the publishing stages

*saying no, or not right now until we have the resource means that all parties can be sustainably supported

*operating as a needs and requirements-based publisher.

with our collaborators, we offer core services, but we do not offer a strict working model. instead we ask, “how can we help you, what do you need?” at each and every stage and work from there.

we sustain ourselves


*through a (hopefully) flourishing reader base, where we wish to build a sustainable network of readers, writers, and subscribers over time with whom we share common values

*reserving time and resources to continue, connect, collaborate, share and learn from other publishers in the field

*finding time to read[bg][bh][bi][bj]


*by establishing a subscription [bl][bm][bn]model to support our authors, our internal publishing costs, and eventually, our ecosystem

*by working in collaboration with institutions, much like School of Common[bo]s who we currently work with, to financially support our core resource costs, as well as our larger publishing vision  

*by continuing to apply for public funding

*by researching alternative financial models

*Some examples of how this could work in practice:

  1. Making everything possibly in house, and when not possible, collaborating with local organisations and institutions who provide the needed services to create a local ecosystem of production
  2. Making a limited number of copies (around 15) which go directly into the hands of the communities best connected to the project and printing on demand thereafter[bp]
  3. Adopting a subscription based distribution model
  4. Facilitating open “knowledge sharing” crit/feedback sessions at the beginning of the publishing process so the content of the book is explored openly and freely, and made publicly accessible from the start, not after publishing date
  5. Create an ongoing logbook, that is digitally available, documenting each of the stages and milestones into the process from meetings, to decisions, to admin work, to reworks etc.
  6. Provide open-source and print-at-home versions of all publications with translation option and editing options
  7. Offering other means for people to purchase a book (book exchanges, labour exchanges, skill exchange etc)[bq]
  8. Sharing part of, or all, of the publication content via newsletter, either in stages or in one go
  9. Maintaining the “shorter long-form”[br][bs] of the pamphlet, to ensure we can continue to experiment with form, style and content, and ensure the level of content required from collaborator is accessible and sustainable

[a]Before I comment, I would like to know the reader that you intend to address with this manifesto

[b]Predominantly future collaborators and readers (who we would like to end up as collaborators). By collaborators this could mean authors, but also printers, designers, distributors - basically everyone who might be involved in the publishing process along the way. Let me know if this is too broad and I can try and be more specific

[c]why a publishing house that is called after what is not exciting? dont we want it to be exciting? maybe there's a good reason, but I want to know!

[d]Excellent question! And, strangely, you are the first person to ask this. HumDrum was chosen, firstly, because I love how it rolls around the mouth and feels an enjoyable and fun phrase to say. But more conceptually (and probably importantly), as HumDrum aims to centre commoning, collectively and collaboration as its core methodology, the name aligns with our belief that these moments are often felt the strongest and most powerfully in the day-to-day, often ignored or unnoticeable activities and interactions and not as part of grand gestures

[e]love that the beginning of a manifesto is about seeking something, not exposing principles

[f]wouldn't this be communal? "communal resource"

[g]this is a good question! do you think community and communal can mean the same thing? community is very important to what we do, but i agree about using the word communal

[h]I would then change 'public' on the second line, for repetition

[i]yes, beautiful!

[j]This first paragraph sounds very nice, but it sounds to me very arti which can be good if the people addressed come from this art bubble, but it would probably not work for someone like my rocket science friends :)

[k]might be my personal background, but this word resonates to me with the corporate world. I would use something like "strive"

[l]printed matter? I feel "pamphlet publications" might be more defined, so it might contradict the following part of diff. shapes and styles and textures


[n]i feel a manifesto is meant to be something expressed towards the outside world, to people that perhaps dont share the slang and the expertise you have. and then pamphlet publication is very very niche.. printed matter, ok, sort of understandable.  and books?

[o]would this communal space serve to people involved in the process (collaborators) or also to the broader audience (readers, network and etc.). would be great to expand on this

[p]Excellent question, we certainly mean everyone here, but of course really need to think what structures could be in place to make it possible.  But an excellent question and suggestion!

[q]I love this. Maybe as part of this aim, you can mention that you are also interested in the 'unfinished' or in the format that is not traditionally considered as something to be published (eg. publishing annotations as opposed to publishing a finished novel, article). Anyone who wants to share a fragment of their writing is welcome to publish.



[t]maybe this could be explained a little bit, what is the art publishing field?


[v]To me this reads like, even if you don't consider yourself to be a writer, you are welcome to publish. It sort of takes the pressure away from identifying yourself as someone who publishes, whoever you are you are welcome to publish.

[w]I see, but what would they do if someone wants to promote that the earth is flat or we should build a wall between the US and Mexico?

[x]I guess they would say it doesn't align with out values. I don't think it's necessary to universally construct the 'whomever' here. It is more like if you are interested, get in touch, but not to build a wall obviously.

[y]you are probably right. I feel it just sounds a bit undecided - but maybe that's fine

[z]I understand the intention here, but somehow agree with @gabriel.hensche@gmail.com  that collaboration probably can't and shouldn't be universalized, hence this could be maybe replaced with something like open a dialogue/conversation or so- cause collaboration is a very selective thing and imho should remain so.

[aa]this is not very clear what acts of readings and readership is? maybe it's also just me...?

[ab]love this! also would be curious to know how you are going to define this. i imagine a speculative tool/survey where people write down the publications they wish to exist in the world :D

[ac]Mujgan, what an incredible idea!!! This is absolutely something that could feature on our website - or that we hand out with each publication. Thank you for this!

[ad]yesss! <3



[ag]This part works really well with publishing as doing, ongoing. It puts the emphasis on the slowness in a way, not on the rushed finishedness but on something that leads to reflection, step by step. publishing as reflection, maybe?

[ah]im already wanting to read something about distribution strategies. will it come later? how will we access these works? where will they be?

[ai]you might get criticized along the lines of "sustainability contradicts paper publishing"and so on, whilst I don't necessarily agree with that critique might be good to think how to address it

[aj]is this a question of authorship?

[ak]if so,  i think it would be great if you mention this more explicitly

[al]Actually - anything. What you have done here is contribute towards the model, but also printers, designers, distributors (especially if small scale distribution, like cycling the publication a friends house). So yes, it would be good to state this!

[am]also maybe open studio days

[an]this is the dream!! first i need to find a studio space and then this is absolutely the plan

[ao]open page/blank page session where people could talk about how a certain publication came together / why it was important to publish independently/the humdrum way instead of other forms of publishing.

[ap]feedback rounds?

[aq]yes! but also an opportunity right at the beginning of the process for an author to present their work. a bit like the conversas model https://conversas.net/ so the information and knowledge isn't "saved" or "protected" right until the very end of the publishing process, but can be built on by the community from the very beginning

[ar]this might have answered my question and it came right after, right when I needed it. :)

[as]I love this idea in theory, but in practice it brings the danger of doing things in a Europe-centric way. Ideally I'd include satellite options too, for printing/distributing/coming together based on the person you're working with.

[at]* based on the person's location

[au]community that will be part of publishing or the community about whom the publications are?

[av]I'd be super curious to hear ideas on how to do this

[aw]So, we aim to use an "outreach" model, similar to the community arts festival I'm currently working with on. But this would definitely work differently in publishing than in community arts performance practice, so we're going to try and work with the organisation to see how this model can be adapted - I'll keep you updated with our findings and process!

[ax]have you heard of FRIES in relation to consent? would be cool if you use the same model but adapt it to your manifesto

[ay]FRIES = Freely given, Reversible, Informed, Enthusiastic, and Specific


[ba]No, never. This is incredible, thank you Engy!


[bd]+ code of conduct

[be]Yes!!! Also for the website ;)

[bf]values would be outlined somewhere I guess? this might address the collaboration point above I feel.

[bj]omg the hardest task of all :D



[bm]Yes! Do you think that could work alongside a subscription or instead of?

[bn]would subscription mean sending out the publications? subscribing to newsletters?monthly poetry drops? could be many nice but easygoing things?


[bp]why not release digital version teaser and print on demand larger batch from the beginning?

[br]I don't understand this point, what do you mean? maybe it can be rephrased

[bs]This term was taken from the "Urgent Publishing" publication. " Hybrid publishing opens up a

world of possibilities for ‘shorter longform’, such

as books that range between 20,000-50,000

words. More experimental forms can come into

play, like zines, pamphlets, and manifestos." perhaps we should specify this or add a reference

solution 3

Click here to edit this text