Thursday, 16 June 2011


This is a misleading entry. On the surface it may appear informative, but actually it's an attempt by me to keep tracks. So, this month sees the next Leicester Shindig! This will be held on June 27th at The The Western Pub, 70 Western Road. Doors open at 7:30 and if you want to read get there early, you know the drill. Guest readers include: Luke Kennard, Joel Lane, Simon Perrill and Lydia Towsey. Simon's collection Nitrate, published by Salt, is wonderful, I've written a review on it, which should appear in the next issue of Under The Radar.

The event also sees the launch of the third issue of Hearing Voices which is out now and not available in book shops, but can be purchased via Amazon or send me a message. We've come to the end of the funded issues, there was only money for three. However, issue 4 looks like it's going ahead, following the fate of magazines up and down the country and across the world where there are no tramlines, just wings and prayers. So do buy if you like the sound of it. Here's a pic of issue 3, the front cover was designed by Helen Walsh:

Issue 3 has been guest edited by Alex Plasatis and Melissa Flowerdew-Clarke and features work from Kathleen Bell, Georgina Lock, Matt Merritt, James Walker, Geoff Stevens, and many others, including an 'other' called Maria Taylor.
Other things coming up include the Southwell festival, (can't go this year), featuring Simon Armitage and Matthew Welton. I haven't looked at the full schedule, but I'm sure there are some excellent things going on. Yes, and the Lowdham festival, I may be going in the capacity of woman-helping-out-on-stall-for-DMU, but the twins are coming so it may end up closer to origami, then book selling. There's a talk by John Lucas and a reading by Deborah Tyler-Bennett on June 25th at Lowdham too. My dearest, Jonathan Taylor, is also reading at the Swansea festival tonight, which I couldn't get to, on account of motherhood, but he's reading some of my work.

What else, competitions. Right, I have a phobia of competitions. I'm never sure if they're worth the hassle or not. So, why not just see them as a contribution to worthwhile organisations, such as Cheltenham Buzzwords, judged by Alison Brackebury. A worthy one I think. If you're a woman you could try Mslexia, judged by Jo Shapcott. I'm reading Of Mutability and it's excellent. The lucky woman will win herself £2,000, a week at a writing retreat and an afternoon with Fiona Sampson. There's lots of details on The Poetry Kit, about all these comps, many noteworthy ones are coming up such as the Keats-Shelley Prize, Bridport and others. There's one on Eyewear, celebrating six years of the blog. The prize is £6, there's a lot you can do with that amount, you could enter more competitions for one thing. Will I be entering any, I think not, I'll have to really persuade myself. What I would advise is that on the Mslexia and Poetry Society website, you can browse through the winning entries which is always interesting.

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