On the first day of March (World Book Day) I gave a reading and talk about 'The Onion Stone' in my local library. Questions were interesting - mainly about contenders in the authorship issue but also about the writing process itself, the nature of a novella, whether one does a lot of planning or grants freedom to the Muse. Here are a couple of photographs:
Another good thing has been The Stirred Poet competition run by that lovely forum The Write Idea. It had six rounds, one a week and a public vote. I was lucky enough to win it by three points with many excellent poets chasing after me! It was great fun and there was a lot of goodwill.
The most exciting thing has been an offer from SPM publications, the publishing division of Sentinel Poetry Movement, to publish my next full length collection. It will be called 'All the Invisibles' and should be out on October 1st. So now I have the dilemma of sorting and organising my poems!
I've also been asked to be a regular judge for the Excel for Charity/Swale Life competitions including the forthcoming one. I love judging competitions so I'm very pleased.
Last weekend I led a morning workshop at St Cuthman's, the beautiful retreat centre in Coolham, West Sussex. The theme was 'Exchange' in all its variations. I haven't yet written any poems prompted by my own material but I had a fine time walking round the lake and the woods and making notes on things that caught my attention. I have written them up into a spring poem:
One April day
This lake is the silver of tin.
Three geese rush on in a whirling of wings,
skid in a kick-up of splash.
Today it’s bright with sparrows and buds.
Daffodils in a downhill tumble
slither and swoop.
Elsewhere the lake is heavy:
conifer-coloured; still. A gravel path
has a twist of violets, half covered up at the edge.
A bush of holly speckles
with leaves of a small new green. Overhead
are the questions and answers of crows.