As I mentioned in an earlier throwback post, to tie in with my Black Country poems going on exhibition at Dudley Museum, I spoke at a panel discussion about my writing process, the poems, and what interested me as a writer. I was met with such a positive response, that I felt a spark was lit within me for discussing and sharing my passion with others. This set me on a new path within my poetry career: one of teaching writing classes, running workshops, and mentoring poets.Continue reading “Throwback: Passing the Spark”
Equipped with only a small printed booklet of my Black Country poems, I performed for the first time at Waterstones in Birmingham. This was at the launch of Cain, the fifth poetry collection by Luke Kennard, who at the time was my lecturer at the University of Birmingham. To be invited to read at his event was an honour; to perform in front of some of my classmates was a terror; to read at Waterstones set me up for the next big opportunity of my poetry journey.Continue reading “Throwback: Festival Season”
I am a firm believer that opportunity begets opportunity: if you seize the things that come your way, more exciting ventures will follow. Early in my poetry journey, I applied to a project that was passed along by the university, organised by the Birmingham-based arts charity Leaveners. They were curating a ‘Poets’ Corner’: a showcase of poets, all sharing small portfolios of their work. I was elected to be their Poet of June, 2015.Continue reading “Throwback: Poet of June”
As I mentioned in my last ‘throwback’ post, it was during my first university assignment, centred around ‘generations’, that I first began writing creatively about the Black Country. I had a fascination for the history and heritage of it all ‒ the factories, the workshops, the pits ‒ and the culture that has outlived it. Of course, I wasn’t alive during when the industry was at its peak, but I was nonetheless intrigued by the resonances it continues to have through dialect, art, and story.Continue reading “Throwback: Black Country Wench”
What better place to begin this thread of throwbacks than right at the beginning of my poetry journey? This post will look back to my time at the University of Birmingham, where I composed my first ever poem (and later, my first manuscript), on the English with Creative Writing course.Continue reading “Throwback: Back to School”
Though times are uncertain and events have been cancelled, I find myself with more time on my hands than usual. I want to dedicate some of this time to working on this website, to write more about what’s going on in my world poetry-wise, and to take you a little further into my creative practice.
I will be starting a few new ‘threads’, and one of these will be ‘throwbacks’: little glimpses back along my poetry journey thus far. This will hopefully fill out my story from what is currently on my website (which covers the publication of Bella onwards), and give me a chance to reflect on how far I’ve come, and where I might go next.
Throwbacks will be published every Thursday, starting this Thursday, at least for the next couple of months. The other threads will be announced soon!
Back in February, I had my last shift as a guide in Shakespeare’s Birthplace. I’d been in this position for over a year, and while it was a wonderful experience that taught me so much, I felt it was time to move onto something new. It was time to hang up the Tudor dress, and move into a role that would become the start of a career in creative programming and event coordination.Continue reading “Onto Something New…”
I am really pleased to have two poems included in the most recent anthology from Offa’s Press: The Poetry of Worcestershire. One is a poem from my pamphlet, Bella, also published by Offa’s, and the other is a previously unpublished piece.Continue reading “The Poetry of Worcestershire”
For National Poetry Day this year, I was invited back to my alma mater, Windsor High School, to run some workshops and talk to pupils about the importance and joy of poetry. It is not often that I find myself doing something really special for this celebratory day, so it was really exciting to have the opportunity to teach and talk about poetry.Continue reading “National Poetry Day, 2019”
I am absolutely thrilled to announce that I will be poet-in-residence at the University of Loughborough for the academic year 2019/20!Continue reading “Uni of Loughborough Poet-in-Residence, 2019/20!”