I'm really behind for this blog and other things.  So until I catch up here's a short post to clear a few things up.

    In it I discuss my future plans, how to submit guest posts and why most submissions do not get published and so on.
    Firstly, a quick thank you to those who've sent me emails or comments!!  It is nice to know this does reach someone.  It also creates an odd sense of achievement.  I started this blog more as a place and way to store my findings about the funeral industry.  So it's been a wonderful surprise to watch it grow into something more, and to actually be liked or useful!

    Unfortunately I haven't managed my time well and took on too much at once.  There is a post about my time at Lady Anne Funerals scheduled for later this week.  But there wont be much else for this blog for a while.

Guest Posts:
    After posting a guest post by someone others have asked if they can submit posts of their own.  I encourage everyone and anyone to write things for this blog.  It would be great to get more perspectives, especially from funeral companies and funeral staff.  The posts do not have to be 'good' by any means.  I tend to write mine before bed, as a nice way to end the day.  Also I have a strange policy where I do not review the posts before publishing.  So I do not fix any spelling or grammar mistakes.  This gives it a more relaxed and spontaneous feel.

    Having said that I do have some rules which I stick to strictly.  Which is why only one guest post has been published while several have been submitted.  The post must use a 'funeral industry' framework.  For example I never discuss death or grief in a spiritual setting.  It is irrelevant and off topic.  Instead I talk of these things from a 'funeral' perspective.

    My other strict rule is no identifying individuals.  Even if they consent, nobody is to ever by identified, be they alive or dead.  Even the author must publish anonymously.  One can name a company, within reason, but never an individual.

    If you have something to say about the funeral industry then send it to me.  As long as it is on topic and doesn't identify anyone then chances are I'll publish it.

    Another place to find and publish things about the funeral industry is coffin-talk.  It is a great forum with people from all over the world.  A good mix of funeral staff and funeral industry enthusiasts, who are all quite friendly and encouraging.

Future Plans:
    Later this week I intend to publish a post about my time inside Lady Anne Funerals.  Recently they let me in to take photos, chat with staff and observe their operations.  The post about my time there should be up on Friday, next Monday at the latest.

    I intend to do a series of posts about thanatourism, visiting funeral sites (such as cemeteries and crematoriums) for recreation.  These posts require a fair bit of actual field work and are taking a while to research.  In these posts I focus on Waverley Cemetery, Eastern Suburbs Memorial Park, Northern Suburbs Crematorium and Rookwood.  Just a select handful of the best places in Sydney.

    One goal of mine is to define 'The Dead Body' (TDB).  I have realised that TDB is not like the living body in many ways (and not just because it is dead).  Thus I thought it would be good and fun to define it, to explore it and the connotations around it.  My first essay to do this will be on the fetishism we have for TDB as part of how we define it.

    My modernity things are put on hold, for now.  The three base essays are done, but the fourth which looks at InvoCarenization is taking a while.  Well, the essay itself is not taking too long, but the theorie research is slow and boring.  My hope is to have the fourth essay look at what InvoCarenization is, its impact on the industry and to tie the previous three essays together.

    I am starting to get into funeral homes and places.  To actually approach them rather than observe from a distance.  It has not always been successful, with Lady Anne Funerals being the only one to be happy and willing.  Others just say no or are hesitant and wary.

    There is also a plan to write three short and informal essays on emotional displays at funeral.  How people show their emotions, and what groups show what emotions.  Basically I am looking at the idea of grief and sadness as a socially taught thing rather than something we are born with.  Plus it is an interesting and informative look into different cultures and different funerals.

    A training manual is something I would like to put together.  A short guide on how to work in the funeral industry.  Many have commented on how much knowledge is assumed by the funeral industry, that they think new employees already know many important things.  Hopefully this guide would be a collaboration by many people to get many views while still being simple and easy to understand.  I have started with a post about how to do transfers in all major Sydney hospitals.  WIth time I want to add more.

    I always do my best to be appropriate, tactful and delicate with certain things.  A few find funerals to be a touchy topic, which I understand.  It can be uncomfortable for those who incorrectly associate it with death or dirtiness.  It can also be emotional for those who have lost someone or think of a future loss.

    So far I have found discussing funeral to be like walking on thin ice.  I constantly have to think about what I am saying and how I am saying it.  But thank fully so far I have always managed to be honest, to say what I see and think.  I have never had to 'modify' anything to appease others.

    This is probably because I have never been asked.  Nobody has said I should change something, that what I said or how I said it was inappropriate.  In fact I generally receive positive comments.  But if there is something that makes you uncomfortable or unhappy then simply let me know, email me.  Be it a company or individual, if there are any issues I will listen and do what I can.

    At the end of the day I will be honest, giving my perspective on the industry.  I won't change things to make others look good.  I understand how it can be a touchy topic for some and will try to be appropriate and delicate.

    As always if there are any issues or questions then contact me.  My email can be found allover this blog for that reason!


No comments:

Post a Comment

Never hesitate to ask a question or comment on something, this is an open minded and free space.

If you want to contact me privately do so at: theothersideoffunerals@gmail.com