Well, here we are edging into October and the faded glories of a Whitby summer are long past. I've been thinking about the rhythm of the year and the way that my teaching work and writing get twined into the seasons. Come the end of August, everything goes crazy as students stream into college for enrolment. My garden wilts and the blog falters. What I call the 'day-job' takes over for a while. In this last month, it's been hard to get my Writers' hat on at all - except in the early mornings. Before sun-up, I'm jotting in the purple notebook. And I'm pleased to say a string of new prose-poems - snippets shall we say? - are beading together in the margins of my days.
But suddenly leaves are crackling underfoot and half-term is only a spit away. October could well be my favourite time of year. Because as the new classes bed down - as the nights get darker and clocks change over - I come into my best writing season. Outside the reddening trees and early sunsets make me giddy with anticipation. On the front street, they're hanging the Divali lights and Halloween and Bonfire Night will tumble after. Inside, it's dark and cocoon-like and the hibernation seems to stir something in that place the writing comes from. So bring on the conkers and firecrackers and frost, I say.
But before the summer gets forgotten altogether, I'm hoping to do some catch-up blogs after my long silence and tell you about some of the wonderful books I read on those long, lazy days by the sea.
Writing is a journey, both imaginary and physical. My first book took me to the Arctic to 'catch the colours' of the Northern Lights. Then I hunkered down to catch the wind-blown voices of polar explorers on Shackleton's 1914-17 Endurance expedition. More recently I'm obsessed by space: the race, the rockets, the final frontier.
Hear a BBC Radio Leicester interview about my space poetry at: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p03wfpyp
Explore my digital narrrative PHILAE'S BOOK OF HOURS, published by the European Space Agency, at:
My prose-poetry collections FIREBRIDGE TO SKYSHORE
and MAD, HOPELESS & POSSIBLE are both published by Original Plus Press at:
Contact me for signed copies or bookings at:
- Leicester, East Midlands
- As a storyteller, my work crosses boundaries of myth, science, history and spoken word. It has been presented in the British Science Museum, Ledbury Poetry Festival, National Space Centre and the European Space Agency website. In 2014 I ran a digital residency on WW1 for 14-18NOW and Writing East Midlands. I teach Creative Writing at De Montfort University and have experience of leading school events, workshop tuition and mentoring.