Friday 28 April 2023

Poetry Workshop at Leicester University's Botanic Garden with Tim Relf


Enjoy poetry? Fancy spending some time in Leicester University’s Botanic Garden?

The Garden’s Poet in Residence, Tim Relf, will be running a small, half-day workshop on May 20th 2023, suitable for poets of all levels.

It will be opportunity to write, share and discuss poetry. So whether you're a budding novice or an established writer, come along and join poet, novelist and enthusiastic amateur gardener Tim Relf for this friendly session at the venue in Oadby.

You can find more details of the workshop here



Tim Relf's poetry has appeared in such titles as The Spectator, Acumen, Bad Lilies, The Rialto, Stand, The Frogmore Papers, Poetry Salzburg, Wild Court, One Hand Clapping, Ink Sweat & Tears, The Friday Poem and The Alchemy Spoon. He was runner up in the Prole Laureate Competition 2022 and the 2021 McLellan Poetry Prize; was longlisted in The Rialto Nature and Place competition 2023; and has had work in various anthologies. He's had three novels published – the most recent by Penguin, which has now been translated into 20 languages. 

You can read an interview with Tim Relf on Everybody's Reviewing here


Tuesday 25 April 2023

Constantine, "Tiya and the Minotaur"

Congratulations to Constantine, University of Leicester MA Creative Writing graduate, who has just published a picture book, Tiya and the Minotaur!



Constantine 
is an autistic writer. He holds an MA in Creative Writing from the University of Leicester and his previous works include The Cats of Charnwood Forest and four episodes of the children 's TV series Pablo, which is available on BBC in the UK and Netflix worldwide.



About Tiya and the Minotaur, by Constantine

This picture book was written by an autistic writer for his autistic children.

Is this book only for autistic and neuro-diverse children?  No.
However. it has been made with them in mind. The artwork has been designed in such a way that readers on the spectrum, by and large, find helpful. For instance, throughout the work none of the characters have faces. Many people know that many autistic people find eye-contact uncomfortable; however, even when eye contact is not an issue, processing faces can add a significant load to an autistic child's ability to process. Interestingly when testing this book on both autistic and neurotypical adults and children, few even noticed the characters' lack of facial features and in the few who did, none found it an issue. The colours and scenes throughout are 'soft.' By this, I mean that even in that few brightly lit scenes, there is nothing 'glaring; or 'confusing.'  Whilst I love abstract imagery, it can be a stumbling block for young children and can even overload an autistic child trying to make sense of the scene.  

In addition, the author has noticed that there are many young advanced readers who still crave picture books with age-appropriate stories, but want something longer with a more challenging vocabulary. At the same time, there are older reluctant readers who need to be eased into reading but find novels intimidating or boring and need a hand to get back into the practice of reading for pleasure. To find an autistic child of say twelve years of age who is unable to read fluently and still like to have picture books read to them is not unusual.
It is primarily for them that this book has been created, though I hope the neurotypical of all ages will also enjoy it. 
​​​​​​​

From Tiya and the Minotaur





Sunday 23 April 2023

Clare Dwyer, "Murmurations"

 


Clare Dwyer lives with her husband in South-East Cornwall and is an active member of Liskeard Poets. Her debut collection If Wishes Were Horses (2019) was published by Scryfa. She was also a runner-up in an environmental poetry competition run by The Literary Platform. Recently, she graduated from Plymouth University with an MA in Creative Writing. She has three children and a gaggle of grandchildren whom she considers to be her greatest achievement.



About Murmurations, by Clare Dwyer

In 2020 I should have been researching for my dissertation of ekphrastic poems on ‘Reflections: The Use of Mirrors and Reflections in Paintings of the 16th and 17th Century,’ for my MA at Plymouth University. Thwarted by lockdown and the necessity to shield, my dissertation became a very different animal.

Drawing on a notebook I kept during that time, the poetry which emerged explored the microcosm in which I found myself and the macrocosm of the cosmos. My poetry collection Murmurations was formed around the nucleus of those poems which I had written for my dissertation.

Murmurations is my second collection and has been published in my seventieth year by Hermitage Press who concentrate on Cornish writers - so, yes, I live in Cornwall with my husband and a head-banging spaniel. We have three adult children and enough grandchildren to form a seven-a-side team, although I’m not sure the ten-month-old would qualify. 

You can read more about Murmurations on the publisher's website here. Below, you can read three sample poems from the collection.


From Murmurations

Murmurations

During the time of plague
these murmurs of words
drifted like dust,
settled on paper
grew shapes.

Over time they twisted,
turned
made pictures,
then settled.

Sometimes they rose
flocked,
darkened the air,
merged, melded
–changed,
became charged with meaning
then settled into verse.


Two Boldly Go

         For Voyagers I and II

Two small craft have passed
the point of Heliosphere
where a turbulent tug of war
causes particles to change 
the momentum of their dance.
Formed by solar winds
this protective bubble
waxes, wanes, changes shape
on our elliptical, galactic voyage.
A membrane before interstellar space
which, save for those two, small craft
is uncrossed, unknown, untravelled.


A Quiet Life

I’ve got drunk on stars
danced with the moon
played a deep note
on a tarnished bassoon.
Hid my light under a bushel
found freedom to shine,
been young, na├»ve –
now aged like good wine.
I’ve given birth
I’ve seen the dead,
read so many words
all crammed in my head.
I’ve been joyously happy
and quite the reverse,
but what defines me
is reflecting in verse.


Friday 21 April 2023

Juliet Cook, "red flames burning out"

 


Juliet Cook's poetry has appeared in a small multitude of print and online publications. She is the author of numerous poetry chapbooks, recently including Another Set of Ripped-Out Bloody Pigtails (The Poet's Haven, 2019), The Rabbits with Red Eyes (Ethel Zine & Micro-Press, 2020) and Histrionics Inside my Interior City (part of Ghost City Press's 2020 Summer Micro-Chapbook Series), as well as this latest poetry chapbook, red flames burning out, published by Grey Book Press in April 2023. Later this year, she has another new poetry chapbook forthcoming, Your Mouth is Moving Backwards (from Ethel Zine & Micro Press). Cook's first full-length poetry book, Horrific Confection, was published by BlazeVOX. Her most recent full-length poetry book, Malformed Confetti, was published by Crisis Chronicles Press in 2018. Cook's own tiny independent press, Blood Pudding Press, sometimes publishes hand-designed poetry chapbooks and sometimes creates other art. You can find out more on her website here



About red flames burning out, by Juliet Cook

red flames burning out contains broken doll fingers bulging their way out of blubbering chicken wire. Losing parts of one’s self and growing new parts in the form of self-created nightmares, body and brain malfunctions, seizures and other divorces from parts of past reality. Pitching standard traditions in the trash, wrapped in drying blood. Creepy bird’s nests and fear of impending death, yet still continuing to create one’s own sizzling and burning red fire, in the course of 20 poems.


From red flames burning out

Mangled Is Still Alive

No I wasn't trying
to kill an invisible mouse
by accidentally shooting
my seizure pill under the oven
and not being able to find it.
I'm not small enough to crawl
all the way under;
to pull you out if you are
even smaller and more invisible
than me. Really, the unreal

mouse lives in the past,
stuck in my brain from years back,
when mice horded my married life
and I was told what to do and said yes.
We had traps set up all over the place.

One of mine snapped,
but didn't kill the mouse
that got stuck in it.
It just maimed her.
She screamed underneath

that oven and I decided not to step on her head,
not to stomp out and crush those screams.
I swept the trap out from under the bottom,
extracted the screaming mouse from the inside
and threw her mangled body out the door.


Internal Suffocation

I know what's starting to happen.
I've heard this before, this wooshing
inside my brain as the room disappears.
I sit down on the floor and shut my eyes.

Then I'm suddenly back up on my feet
and confused about what day it is,
what time it is, what I was doing,
how long my seizure lasted and why
I wrote a bunch of people's names
on a sheet of paper. Why I rearranged
rows of clothes in my closet and piled
rows of books in front of a suitcase.

I don't remember doing any of this.
I don't remember where I thought I was going to go.
I do remember who I am though.

Demolished flesh that nobody wants to look at.
Least of all me.
Shaking around out of control,
groaning a low guttural moan
that dries into a hiss.

Acidic vomit drips
from a vulture's mouth. Clotted
saliva is mixed up with blood then rots.
The good parts get eaten up and shit out.

Haggard hooded vulture woman
with nothing better to do than grunt and swallow
her own semi-digested dead heart.


Wednesday 19 April 2023

Anna Vaught, "These Envoys of Beauty"

 


Anna Vaught is an English teacher, mentor and author of several books, including 2020’s novel Saving Lucia and short fiction collection, Famished. Her shorter and multi-genre works are widely published in journals, magazines and anthologies. She is currently a columnist for Mslexia and has written regularly for The Bookseller, including as a columnist. Anna’s second short fiction collection, Ravished, was published by Reflex Press in 2022, and 2023 will see five books: memoir, These Envoys of Beauty (Reflex Press), new novel The Zebra and Lord Jones, plus The Alchemy, Anna’s first book about writing (both Renard Press, UK and Commonwealth). Saving Lucia will be published in Italian by Milan’s 8tto Edizioni as Bang Bang Mussolini. Anna is a guest university lecturer, tutor for Jericho Writers, volunteer with young people and has recently established the new Curae prize for writer-carers, with industry-wide support, and the editor of Curae: An Anthology from the Inaugural Prize (Renard Press). She works alongside chronic illness, is a passionate campaigner for mental health provision, including in the publishing industry, and she is represented by Kate Johnson of Wolf Literary, NYC. Anna has just finished a collection of essays and is working on a new novel, while two of her books are on US submission. Her website is here



About These Envoys of Beauty: A Memoir

In These Envoys of Beauty, Anna Vaught explores her relationship with the natural world, how it fed and feeds her imagination, and how it gave her hope of something different beyond the world she experienced as a child and young person. She writes about how she oriented herself to the natural world and lived within it while growing up in a rural home; about wishing trees, talking streams, and her early knowledge of plants, animals, and botanical names; about her passionate relationship, even when very young, with foraging and what was edible, how things smelled, licking the rain from leaves, drinking, growing, and cooking.

Over twelve essays, Vaught uses her relationship with the natural world to explore themes of loneliness, depression, and complex and sustained trauma within the family home, issues that shaped her early life and continue to have a far-reaching impact decades later. The text is both a detailed natural history and a complex mental health chronicle, with an exploration of intergenerational trauma; it is both personal history and a scholarly work. These Envoys of Beauty is frank in its treatment of difficult issues but offers many hopeful suggestions and ideas. 

You can read more about These Envoys of Beauty on the publisher's website here. Below, you can read an excerpt from the memoir. 


From These Envoys of Beauty, by Anna Vaught

‘On Depression: Flood and Mud’ 

If ever I felt desperate as a child and teenager, I would run and run and go to one of the two weirs close to our house and hear the rushing anger of the water, the gorgeous curve of it and the pound. I was comforted and grounded by the sense of danger. That done, I would wade into the river Frome from one of the little mud beaches I loved so much, hopping through the holes the cows had made when coming down to drink. I would feel the slap of water weeds around my calves, then thighs too, and sometimes I would press myself against the bank, pushing my arms hard back behind me, grabbing on roots, too deep, not steady, but enthralled by the water and its rapid movement. 

On it went. It didn’t see me or care for me and that it could kill me without even knowing was a comfort: it made sense of how very tiny I was, and that, for some reason, made me feel safe. The roar of the weir was at my back, supernatural, and its volume made my anxiety and my cry small too. 

I would go home, wet, calmer, and slope to my room, or sometimes curl into a ball in my den in the creepers. I remember being in year nine in secondary school and feeling a sense of separation and my oddity. I was certain that no other fourteen-year-old in school curled themselves into a ball in a creeper den and wished themselves away. I was certain that no one else would have understood the weirdo pressed into the riverbank. What you do not know until you grow up a bit more is that the world is full of weirdos like you: water lovers, chuggers in the mud, wailers in the fields where the cows have been. That is an encouraging thought ...




Tuesday 18 April 2023

Luke Samuel Yates, "Dynamo"

 


Luke Samuel Yates has published three pamphlets (with The Rialto, Smith | Doorstop, The Philadelphia Institute for Advanced Study), was a Poetry Society Foyle Young Poet on four occasions, and was selected for the Aldeburgh Eight. His first collection, Dynamo, won the 2022 Poetry Business International Book and Pamphlet Prize. He has recent poems in magazines including Poetry Wales, The Rialto, Anthropocene, Ambit and The North, and he has performed at Aldeburgh, Ledbury, Kendal Calling and on Radio 4. A lecturer in Sociology, he teaches and researches political movements, technology, and consumption practices. 



About Dynamo, by Luke Samuel Yates

Dynamo is a collection of poems expressing anxieties about nature, relationships and situations; and meditates on advice from philosophical teabags, men’s magazines, and the city of Birmingham. Over the course of the book, things break down, start again, light up, get stuck. Relationships stagnate, mountains and seas diminish, White nationalists fall over in Blackpool, and a wealthy couple’s house disappears one day, leaving them surrounded by their appliances, tanned and eating an egg. The book has three sections, each of which is actually three chunks of five poems, so the collection builds up in a kind of fractal shape, but you can still read it as you would something which did not do that. 

You can read more about Dynamo here. Below, you can read two sample poems from the collection. 


From Dynamo

Breakdown
 
The engine gave out when we reached the top.
We were on a B road going over the moors.
Horses grazing on their shadows off West
and in the other direction turbines
gesturing like air traffic controllers.
 
You walked down the road for a signal.
Mum stayed in the passenger seat
with the door open, drinking tiny sips of water.
Flies kept landing on her hands and hair.
I wanted to brush them away but didn’t want to startle her.
 
Some way off you found it and called me over.
A swarm the size of a Cantaloupe melon
clinging to the trunk of a hawthorn. A ball
of bees, chocolate and khaki, barely moving
but all pointing in the same direction.
 
A planet of traffic jams. Going somewhere
but also not going anywhere. We watched
as some left and others arrived,
ignoring us, figuring out
what to do next.
 
If only we could work together
to get out of this fix, you said
when we were back on the road,
back on the motorway, with all
the other people, in their cars. 



Song about putting a bird in a pie

 
A relaxed mind is a creative mind,
says my inspiring teabag. Yours advises
to empty yourself and let the universe fill you.
We pick up the empty flowerpot on the road
and a man in a dressing gown eating tomatoes
leans out of a window and demands
 
that we put it back. I ask him if it’s his pot.
Put it back, he shouts. Put it back.
Each smile is a direct achievement,
I remind him. He replies that gratitude
is the open door to abundance.
We carry on walking.
 
We get onto the future.
When should we panic?
Reading the tea leaves, you say that
happiness arrives when we overcome
the most impossible challenge.
Your bag has exploded.
 
You look at things in such a way that you are not
distracted by being looked at looking at things.
The blackbird sings a phrase then repeats it
like a monolinguist talking to a foreigner.
You can’t believe anybody would even
write a song about putting a bird in a pie.
 
The man from the takeaway under my flat
has climbed into his bin to compress
the rubbish in order to fit more in.
He walks from one side to the other
then back again, like an animal
trapped in the hospitality industry.
 

Monday 17 April 2023

Alan Jenkins, "The Ghost Net"

New Walk Editions, which is co-edited by Nick Everett in the Centre for New Writing at the University of Leicester, is publishing its first full-length poetry collection, The Ghost Net, by Alan Jenkins. 




Alan Jenkins was born in 1955, and has lived in London for most of his life. He has worked as an editor, reviewer and teacher in England, Europe and the United States, and published several volumes of poetry, among them the Forward Prize-winning Harm (1994), A Shorter Life (2005), Revenants (2013) and Marine (a collaboration with John Kinsella, 2015). New Walk Editions published his chapbook Tidemarks in 2018.




About The Ghost Net

A ghost net is a fishing net, or part of one, that remains in the sea after it has been discarded or lost. Alan Jenkins’s eighth full collection of original poems (and his first for a decade) has netted a haul of painful or poignant moments and memories: places and people recalled vividly, sometimes obsessively, in sorrow and in anger. Central to these are an unnamed woman – or women – and the journalist Marie Colvin, who was killed in Syria in 2012. But the paths and ‘sea-roads’ here beckon us insistently back into a past that is not merely personal: The Ghost Net is haunted by a sense of loss in which, as a reviewer of Jenkins’s New Walk chapbook Tidemarks pointed out, a nation and the way it sees itself are implicated. And the elegiac music so distinctive to this poet is accompanied by the wit, telling detail and powerful directness that make reading him a rare pleasure.

You can see more details about The Ghost Net on the publisher's website here. Below, you can read two sample poems from the collection. 


From The Ghost Net, by Alan Jenkins

A Song of Maine

It seemed absurd,
To be flying up to Maine,
An ‘honoured guest’, the week I’d heard
That my life would never be the same again,
That the time had come to pay for every word
I’d let go in unkindness, or in haste,
Every chance I’d let go to waste,
Each drag, each drunken fuck,
Each drop of booze,
Each bit of undeserved good luck
I’d somehow refused to use;
 
That I who’d been
The doctor, was now the disease ...
Could I have known, could I have seen
How I’d mislay that knack I had, to please
By a sort of laying on of hands?
Or, now that I had lost my touch
So that a single touch of mine appalled,
And everything came down to cells and glands,
How much, how much
I’d need you, or that when you called
To say I wasn’t real, what that would mean?

I sat and stared
At the grey Atlantic, at
The grey mist that rolled unimpaired
Over pines and firs, grey rock and where I sat –
A granite perch on Schooner Head, a deck I shared
With foxes, squirrels and a grey raccoon
– Its mask of sadness; at the moon,
Most nights, as it sailed through
A storm-rinsed sky
To mock me and my need for you,
Absurd as that seemed, to its eye.

 
Player’s Navy


I work to make my flat proof against the winters,
My flat roof, my skylights and window-frames,
Unhelped by him, who gave our claims the slip ...
When I kneel to strip the rough planks of my flooring,
Sanding when the soiled, soaked rag snags on splinters,
My head swims with the shining decks of twelve, thirteen;
With white spirit and the whiff of coiled rope. I see him
Straighten up to light another Player’s Navy Cut,
Snap the lighter shut and smooth his moustache-ends
With the back of his hand. I tell myself we were friends
As I reel home after drinking all night in The Ship,
Make my window-latches fast, batten down the hatches
Of my skylights then keel over in the wrack
Of oily rags, the reek of the years that I want back
And listen to the room creak and strain at its mooring.
 

Saturday 15 April 2023

Rishi Dastidar, "Neptune's Projects"



Rishi Dastidar is a fellow of The Complete Works, and a consulting editor at The Rialto magazine. A poem from his debut Ticker-tape was included in The Forward Book of Poetry 2018. A second book, Saffron Jack, was published in 2020, and he is editor of The Craft: A Guide to Making Poetry Happen in the 21st Century. He is also co-editor of Too Young, Too Loud, Too Different: Poems from Malika’s Poetry Kitchen (Corsair). His third collection, Neptune’s Projects, is published by Nine Arches Press.




About Neptune's Projects, by Rishi Dastidar

In the blurb for Neptune’s Projects, I’ve said that the poems are a ‘post-apocalyptic jig and reel.’ The apocalypse bit is important, in that I’m thinking of the book as ‘apocalyptic poetics’ rather than eco poetics. Mainly because I’m not sure ‘ecopoetics’ as a phrase quite gets the alarm we should be feeling – it feels passive to me. I concede that ‘apocalyptic poetics’ is not particularly active either, and absolutely is an overclaim and hyperbole – right now – but in that gap, I thought there was some interesting space to explore; how do you raise concerns about the environment in a new way? Can finding a tone that isn’t bystanding and handwringing per se achieve more, anything? Is there space for, dare one say it, jokes? Hence why Neptune, my main protagonist / avatar this time round, is world weary, sarcastic, and very aware of its limitations – a register I’ve found great for accessing bleak, black humour.

You can read more about Neptune's Projects on the publisher's website here. Below, you can read a sample poem from the collection. 


From Neptune's Projects

Dhow

Are you bored yet, bored of your desk,
your window, the same vista, not even 
a breeze to make the starling fly faster? 

I am bored of performing when I should
be meeting; I don’t know where my eyes 
even go anymore. Only boring people are 

ever bored, a boring person once said, 
and sure my imagination isn’t locked down, 
but then all I could think about was being 

on a dhow right now, a kamal for a heart, 
a lateen the only future, the infinite same 
different from this. I can’t even swim.


Thursday 6 April 2023

Abi Curtis (ed.), "Blood & Cord: Writers on Early Parenthood"




About Blood & Cord: Writers on Early Parenthood, ed. Abi Curtis

A child is born and everything is made anew. In this blur of new beginnings there are tears and laughter, new words and new silences: this is an unmaking and remaking of the self. From short stories about unnerved fathers and lost mothers, to poems about ‘half-built Lego palaces’ and friends who share their deepest secrets, Blood & Cord is a raw exploration of new parenthood. Voicing silenced conversations about loss, grief, and loneliness, as well as the joys and laughter that are part and parcel of becoming a parent, the stories told within offer a refreshingly honest account of life after new life. This collection is a hand in the dark, offering comfort and solidarity to any new parent.

You can read more about Blood & Cord on the publisher's website here. Below, you can read about the editor and two sample pieces from the collection, by Abi Curtis and Liz Berry. 


About the editor

 


Abi Curtis is Professor of Creative Writing at York St John University. She has won an Eric Gregory Award and Somerset Maugham Award for her poetry collections, Unexpected Weather (Salt, 2009) and The Glass Delusion (Salt, 2013). She has a PhD in Creative and Critical Writing and is inspired by art, psychology, science and the environment. Her first novel, Water & Glass, a speculative climate-change fiction was published by Cloud Lodge Books in 2017. In 2022 Abi’s short fiction was commended in the Bridport, Fish and Alpine Fellowship Prizes, and a poetic sequence on the subject of a medieval anchoress, set to music by David Lancaster, was performed by the Ex Corde Vocal Ensemble.


From Blood & Cord

On my son, falling asleep 

Your tomcat face is wide, unwhiskered.
Your skull weighty as a coconut  
or the globe. Your ears: shells that sing
not the sound of a shore, but laughter
and sussi, uh, tuks, babbi. 
Your belly swells with cheese and blackberries,
heels of bread, stubs of potato. 

Air purrs inside you, engine-bright.
Milk-white canines tip the hot gums;
you feel for mine with a sharp thumb
to know what your mouth might become,
touch the sighs, the questions.
 
Zipped up with toes in a bunch, 
I lay you down 
heavy as a marrow 
fingers star-fishing for daytime things. Wrapped in the dark. 
Waiting for the strangest dreams.

- Abi Curtis


Godspeed 

When we fuck in sweet darkness  
I leave my body behind, rising 
from her as smoke rises  
from the forging fire. 
Godspeed, I tell her,  
as we part like lovers 
on the threshold.  
I want to begin again, 
move as the creatures  
of the air do, birds, moths, 
ghosts shimmering 
in the empty streets, 
the theremin song of the trees
as they shed their inhibitions
against the gold light. 
The blood and jewelling 
of the body, its grief 
and burden, abandoned
like a unreadable book. 
I wish I could take you with me,  
but one of us must stay  
behind, keep watch  
upon the darkness,  
our sons’ warm limbs  
reaching like tendrils 
from their cots. 

- Liz Berry

Monday 3 April 2023

End of Spring Term News

It's the end of the Spring term, so we thought we'd share some recent news from Creative Writing at Leicester. Wishing everyone a good Easter break!



Firstly, we'd like to welcome bestselling author Adele Parks, who has joined the School of Arts as Visiting Professor. She gave a guest workshop on Wednesday 15 March. We've also recently had brilliant guest talks and workshops by Barbara Cooke, Farhana Shaikh and Amirah Mohiddin. There are some great forthcoming guest events next term too. You can see a complete list here.  

New Walk Editions, co-edited from the Centre for New Writing by Nick Everett, is publishing its first full-length poetry collection, Alan Jenkins’s The Ghost Net, on 8 May. The launch event, with readings by Jenkins and by Adrian Buckner and Tuesday Shannon, will take place at Five Leaves Bookshop in Nottingham at 7pm on Wednesday 24 May.  For more details of the book and the event, please see here.



Congratulations to all students and graduates who performed at the Creative Writing Student Showcase on Monday 27 March, which was part of the wonderful Literary Leicester Festival 2023: Laurie Cusack, Kathy Hoyle, Laura Besley, Nina Walker, Sara Waheed and Karen Powell-Curtis. Thanks to everyone who came to the event and helped make it such a lovely evening. 

Congratulations to PhD student Joe Bedford and MA Creative Writing student Laura Besley, both of whom have been longlisted for the Welkin Writing Prize!

As followers of this blog will know, Joe Bedford also has a debut novel, A Bad Decade for Good People, forthcoming from Parthian Books in June. You can read more about it here. His story "Peak Jack" has been published by Flights Journal here

MA Creative Writing student Madeleine Bell has written a review of Mona Awad's novel Bunny for Everybody's Reviewing here

As well as being longlisted for the Welkin Prize, Laura Besley's story "Vernacular" has been published by 50-Word Stories here. She has written reviews for Everybody's Reviewing here and here and here

MA Creative Writing student Sushma Bragg has written a review of Lionel Shriver's novel We Need to Talk about Kevin for Everybody's Reviewing here

Laurie Cusack is publishing the book of short stories he wrote during his PhD in Creative Writing. The book is called The Mad Road, and will be published by Roman Books in August 2023. More details to follow! Laurie has also written a review for Everybody's Reviewing here

Congratulations to BA English and Creative Writing graduate Shae Davies, whose stories "The Trung Sisters" and "Maria Ressa" have been published in Bedtime Stories: Amazing Asian Tales from the Past (Scholastic, 2022). 



Sam Dawson, MA Creative Writing graduate, has had his short story "Symphony no.14" published by Syncopation Literary Journal here

Congratulations to PhD Creative Writing student Kathy Hoyle, whose work was longlisted for the Bath Award for Novella-in-Flash

PhD student Lucretia McCarthy is editing a chapbook of life writing called Lives in Conversation. You can find the submission details here. Lucretia hosted and interviewed the experimental life writing author Joanna Walsh during this year's Literary Leicester Festival. 

BA English student Helen Schofield has written a review of Saint Maybe by Anne Tyler for Everybody's Reviewing here

Congratulations to Jane Simmons, PhD Creative Writing student, who has been longlisted for the National Poetry Competition. She also read a poem called "Poem in Which My Father Does Not Die Young" at the Aldeburgh Poetry Festival in November. The poem was longlisted in the Mslexia poetry competition. She has accepted an invitation to Mimi Khalvati’s poetry retreat on Crete in June. She wrote a review for Everybody's Reviewing here. 

Lisa Williams, MA Creative Writing graduate, has had her flash story "The Weekly Shop" published in Friday Flash Fiction here. She also wrote a review for Everybody's Reviewing here

MA Creative Writing student Gift Yusuf has written a review of Purple Hibiscus for Everybody's Reviewing here