The Spoken Word: an American in York

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Are you planning on being in York around the first of January and want a “bracing start to the year” (to steal a quote from the WOL editorial staff)? If so, somewhere around 7 pm on Tuesday evening, locate the Exhibition hotel, make your way to the Conservatory in the rear, and find a seat. A long-running poetry and prose open mic is about to start.

In the well-lit, tchotchke-filled back ro...

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Tales from the venues

Write Out Loud's poetry workshop: imagine your island

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This month’s Write Out Loud poetry workshop exercise is provided by Jackie Hagan:

Draw a shape on a piece of paper. This is your island. Inside the island write the names of things you’d have there - you can have whatever you want – and outside, the names of things you wouldn’t have. Your isl...

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December exercise

Fiona Sampson to launch new poetry magazine

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Fiona Sampson, who resigned as editor of Poetry Review earlier this year, is to launch and edit a new poetry magazine next month. The first issue of POEM magazine, described as an international Eng...

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News

Burning the midnight oil: writer's 100-hour marathon to raise cash for Arvon

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A 100-hour writing marathon that began on Monday night at midnight ended at 4am today, Saturday 22 December. David Varela commenced writing poems and other pieces non-stop at Ted Hughes’s former ho...

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News

New website to offer digital publishing advice

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Want to self-publish - but bewildered by the options available?  Need more practical tips about writing in the digital age? A new, free website, The Writing Platform,  aimed at giving poets and wri...

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News

Write Out Loud at Middleton tonight

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Poets at Write Out Middleton will be gathering at the Ring O’Bells on Sunday 23 December – the eve of Christmas Eve - at 7pm. Contact katie.haigh@sky.com.  Guest poet is James Whitrow, and entry is...

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News

Poetic magic and sparkle to you at Christmas

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The message on the label, pictured, is exactly the one we want to pass on to you all this Christmas. It reads:

We hope your Christmas is full of magic and sparkle.

From Kingsland communica...

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News

York Spoken Word's open mic on New Year's Day

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We may not have hit Christmas yet – but poetry events around the country are already looking forward to starting 2013 with an open mic. There are plenty of events on New Year’s Day, including York'...

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News

BBC to mark Dylan Thomas centenary with film about poet's last days

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The BBC is planning a film about the last days of Dylan Thomas, to mark the centenary of the poet’s birth. Thomas died in the US aged 39. Some of his last words were said to be: "I have had 18 stra...

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News

Daljit Nagra to judge Kent and Sussex poetry contest

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Daljit Nagra will be judging Kent and Sussex Poetry Society’s open poetry competition, which has a first prize of £1,000. Entry is £5 per poem, or £4 each for three or more poems, and the closing d...

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Competitions

Poetry by heart: Gove and Motion launch national schools recitation competition

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national poetry recitation competition for teenagers aged 14 to 18 will be launched in schools and colleges next month, the education secretary, Michael Gove, and the former poet laureate, Sir An...

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News

Best foot forward: dance-themed arts group offers £1,000 prize

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Flamingofeather, a London-based multi-media arts organisation, is launching a poetry competition to raise money to develop its dance work, including a community ballet company for people aged 55 an...

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Competitions

Write Out Loud at Marsden tonight

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There’s plenty of room at the Marsden Write Out Loud open poetry evening. (and afterwards at the Inn – or Riverhead as it is known in these parts) on Wednesday, 19 December, at Marsden library from...

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News

Can you dig out your 10 best poems?

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Ten poems are all you need to enter the first stage of the Poetry School and Pighog Press poetry pamphlet competition. After initial judging, shortlisted poets will be asked to submit complete pamp...

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Competitions

Write Out Loud at Bolton on Sunday

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Cayn White is the special guest at Write Out Loud Bolton on Sunday 16 December, upstairs at the Brooklyn pub, Green Lane, Bolton. It’s 7pm for 7.30, with entry £1 for this open mic event. Contact J...

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News

Dominic Berry v the dragon at children's book launch

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Dominic Berry will be launching his children’s book, Dommy B vs the Dragon Who Hates Poetry, at Z-Arts, Stretford Road, Manchester at 3.30pm on Saturday 15 December. Entry is free, even for adults....

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News

Deadline nears for Magma prizes

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There’s still time to enter the Magma poetry competition; the deadline is 16 December.  There are two prizes. The judge’s prize for a poem of 11-80 lines will be awarded by the national poet of Wal...

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Competitions

A very merry Write Out Loud at Wigan tonight

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Joy France and Darren Thomas are the two comperes for Write Out Loud Wigan’s Christmas party at the Tudor hotel on Thursday 13 December.  X-rated xmas poems are promised along with the mince pies, ...

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News

Loose Muse at the Poetry Cafe tonight

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Lesley Hale, Angela Stoner, and Vrouwkje Tuinman will be appearing at the Loose Muse night for women writers at the Poetry Cafe, Betterton Street, London on Wedesday 12 December, at 8pm, entry £5/£...

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News

Write Out Loud at Stockport on Monday

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After last month’s visit from Stockport’s head of leisure to talk about spending cuts planned for Stockport art gallery, it’s back to normal on Monday 10 December when Write Out Loud members gather...

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News

Free Christmas fare at the Bards of New Brighton

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There will be free sandwiches and nibbles at the Bards of New Brighton pre-Christmas open floor poetry night on Monday, 10 December, at the Magazine pub. Co-host Dave Costello said: “The Christmas ...

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News

Please give a little to Write Out Loud - if you can spare it!

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The Christmas season is traditionally a time for giving … and Write Out Loud thinks this as good time as any to appeal for your financial help. You may not have noticed, but there is a button to cl...

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News

Want to be published? Four painful facts and a morality tale

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Want to publish your poetry?  Go for it.  But first read my Four Painful Facts and a Morality Tale.

This article hopes to elucidate a few of the more world-weary truths around the publishing of...

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Poets and publishers

France's springtime for poets: is it losing its lustre?

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While the UK has National Poetry Day, the French have Le Printemps des Poètes, which perhaps translates literally as Poets’ Springtime. It’s an immense national festival, a huge celebration of poet...

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Julian's Blog

Linton Kwesi Johnson wins Golden PEN award

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Linton Kwesi Johnson, the man regarded as the father of dub poetry, has won a Golden PEN award for a lifetime’s distinguished service to literature. The award is given annually to a writer resident...

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News

Flying the flag in Stoke Newington at Morning Star assembly

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The Morning Star, home of the Well Versed weekly poetry column edited by Jody Porter, and the Stoke Newington literary festival are teaming up at a Christmas assembly at Stoke Newington's Mascara B...

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News

Chilled: Helen Mort brings poetic shivers to Leeds

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Helen Mort will be performing her eerie A Pint for the Ghost at the Flux Gallery, Hyde Park, Leeds, on Saturday 8 December – a sequence of poems and short stories inspired by South Yorkshire legend...

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News

Poem that inspired a film about dreams, family and loss

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A moving film about a dying woman’s last wish that was written by Write Out Loud’s joint founder, Julian Jordon, and directed by his nephew, Mark Jordon, is being shown at Manchester's Cornerhouse ...

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News

Qatari student jailed for life for internet poem

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A poet in Qatar has been jailed for life after an internet video was posted of him reciting a poem that praised the Arab spring and Qatar’s uprising. Muhammad ibn al-Dheeb al-Ajami had been in pris...

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News

New course for Coleridge's Mariner as Fiona Shaw sets sail

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Samuel Taylor Coleridge as performance poetry? Well, why not? There’s a chance to find out whether or not  it works when Fiona Shaw and dancer Daniel Hay-Gordon perform The Rime of the Ancient Mari...

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News

Motion and Clarke to judge £5,000 Cardiff competition

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The former poet laureate Sir Andrew Motion, and the national poet of Wales, Gillian Clarke will be judging the £5,000 2013 Cardiff International poetry competition. Its deadline is 15 February 2013...

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Competitions

Katie Haigh launches Prejudice and Pride collection

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Write Out Loud Middleton’s organiser, Katie Haigh, will be launching her poetry book, Prejudice and Pride, at Heywood library, Church Street, Heywood, on Monday 3 December between 6-7pm. Among othe...

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News

Dixon, Barraclough and Tierney read at Albion Beatnik bookshop

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Isobel Dixon, Simon Barraclough and Roisin Tierney will be reading at Oxford’s Albion Beatnik bookshop on Wednesday 5 December at 7.30pm as part of an autumn season of poetry and music. The indepen...

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News

Your poems wanted for school’s poet tree

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What a superb way to use the talents of our huge online poetry community! Brennan, Charlotte and Kinny (pictured with Stephen Mellor) of Kingsland Special School  are looking for poems suitable for...

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News

Write Out Loud members send poetic protest to council

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Write Out Loud members at Stockport have composed an e-anthology of poetry which has been sent to Stockport council, expressing their feelings about the future of their meeting place at Stockport a...

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News

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