Sad to hear that John James has died. One of the writers whose work I go back to again and again. I met him just once, when he did a reading at Edge Hill in 2005. Such a nice bloke, and a remarkable poet.
‘I reach toward the poetry of kindred
where we speak in a work as we seldom do otherwise’
from: ‘Poem Beginning With a Line by Andrew Crozier’ in Cloud Breaking Sun (Oystercatcher Press, 2012).
Very pleased to have three poems from my collection Jam published in And Other Poems. The poems are ‘Rain on the Conservatory Roof’, ‘Glastonbury’, and ‘Fifteen’. Thanks to Josephine Corcoran.
Thinking about a session I’m leading at Gloucestershire University tomorrow on submitting work for publication, I came across this quote:
Publishing your work is important. Even if you are giving a piece to some smaller publication for free, you will learn something about your writing. The editor will say something, friends will mention it. You will learn – Tim Cahill.
Very true. And this piece of wisdom that helps keep things in perspective:
I love my rejection slips. They show me I try – Sylvia Plath.
I’m leading a poetry writing workshop for Nottingham Trent University in Coventry Transport Museum on the afternoon of November 29th, on the theme of transport and travel. It’s free, but you’ll need to book. Details here.
Tickets available now from Chapel Arts 01242 580077
There’s nothing quite like coming across a poem, novel, or a piece of music that you’ve never encountered before, especially when it’s been recommended by a friend, and especially when it’s been, for whatever reason, neglected. It’s like sharing a brilliant secret.
No One You Know is the title of a new poetry anthology which will be edited by two good friends of mine, the poets Sue Dymoke and Anthony Wilson. It will feature 75 great poems that you might never have known existed.
In the words of the editors: ‘The book listens in on conversations between seventy-five leading British and Irish poets and their favourite undiscovered poets and poems, and brings them into the open. We have invited each poet to write about a never-before-anthologised poem that they passionately believe deserves a wider audience and to share both the poem and their thoughts about it with readers.’
The book will be published by Unbound Books, an excellent crowdfunding publisher. To check out the book and the contributors, and to pledge support, click here.
It’s good to have a contributor’s copy of the excellent One for the Road, edited by Helen Mort and Stuart Maconie, available now from smith|doorstop. The poem I have in there is ‘On the Third Day’, originally published in Frank Freeman’s Dancing School. Thanks to the editors. Great to launch the anthology at the Tavern in Cheltenham on Saturday, and to catch up with Helen Mort, Suzannah Evans, Alison Brackenbury and Wendy Klein. And to meet Tom Sastry and Jon Sayers.
There’s a free launch event in Cheltenham this Saturday of One for the Road, edited by Helen Mort and Stuart Maconie (Smith/Doorstop). Helen Mort will be reading, and I’ll be reading a poem as one of the contributors, along with Alison Brackenbury, Alan Buckley, Tom Sastry, Jon Sayers and Suzannah Evans from Smith/Doorstop.
The launch is on Saturday 7th October 6.15 to 7.15 pm at The Tavern, 5 Royal Well Place, Cheltenham, GL50 3DN and is part of the LitCrawl programme at Cheltenham Literature Festival.
I’m pleased to say that my interview with the brilliant Geoff Hattersley is now online at Writers Aloud, an audio series featuring Royal Literary Fund Fellows and former Fellows. Also online is my podcast on the RLF Writers Aloud My Favourite Book feature.
It’s good to be involved in these tributes to Tom Raworth in Decals of Desire Issue 3, in good company. Thanks to Martin Stannard.
There’s a fabulous Ikon exhibition on at Birmingham Library at the moment, ‘Pavel Brazda is Here‘, pictures from his Human Comedy Cycle. I can’t recommend it highly enough.