Writers’ Centre Norwich have invited me down to teach a weekend poetry workshop, The Figures Poems Make, on 27th-28th September. We’ll be looking particularly at poetic structure, using Frost as a starting point and then roaming elsewhere, and there will be chance to discuss your poems in progress with me and the group. Full details are on the WCN website here.
I have a new entry on the rather brilliant resource that is the Poetry Archive. You can hear readings of “A Shrunken Head”, and two poems from Public Dream: “Humbles” and “Scandinavia”. Listen here: http://www.poetryarchive.org/
I will be around at, helping out with, and generally enjoying the Derek Mahon conference at Durham University on 18-19 September 2014, for which a Call for Papers has just been released. Full-time academics, postgraduate researchers and independent scholars all welcome: full details here.
I’ll be teaching a poetry workshop at the very beautiful Portico Library in Manchester on Saturday 7th December 2013 from 10am-3pm (lunch included). Poets of all abilities are welcome to join us, and full details can be found here: https://porticopoetry.eventbrite.co.uk/?ref=ecal.
I’ll be reading at Ludlow Assembly Rooms on Friday 27th September as part of the T. S. Eliot Prize’s 20th Anniversary Tour, along with Luke Kennard, Philip Gross and Gillian Clarke. For tickets and so on, call the box office on 01584 878 141 or visit www.ludlowassemblyrooms.co.uk; and for more information on the tour, see the PBS website.
The broadcast of my reading for the Proms Plus Late event at the Albert Hall last Friday will be on BBC Radio 3 tonight, Wednesday 11th September, at 9.15pm. Also performing are the marvellous Porter Quartet, a group of four young jazz musicians from Leeds, to whom I thoroughly enjoyed listening.
A couple of weeks ago, I advertised the poetry course, Taking Form, that I’m going to be teaching in Manchester in September. The response has been fantastic, and some of the places have been taken already, so if you’re interested it would probably be a good idea to get in touch soon.
There have been a couple of questions that people have asked more than once (and which were asked more than once last time I taught this course!), so I thought I would post my responses here, in case anyone else is wondering the same thing.
How big will the group be?
The maximum number of people in the group is ten, which I think is big enough for a good discussion, but small enough to make sure everyone’s work receives real time and attention. I can’t tell you what a luxury it is for me to be able to impose an optimum class size: I really believe this makes a significant difference to the quality of the workshop experience.
Do I have to be writing in named forms to take the course?
My intention for the course is to encourage you to think about poetic form in a larger (and I think more useful) sense than you might ordinarily be encouraged to adopt: there is a lot more to form than pre-existing formal templates. If you are moved to explore any of those templates (blank verse, sonnet, ballad form, etc.), that is absolutely fine with me, but the discussion and exercises are designed to be equally helpful to those working in free verse.
If you have any other questions, just drop me a line.