New Work Ethic: How’s It Working Out, Andrew?

Never trust a question whose subtext is one that says, ‘Hey, I hope it has been a thorough fuck up for you’. I’ve been asked about my new work ethic several times, I have to admit that many have been kind inquiries, some just fascinated whether they can replicate and a very small minority that…

Do I Have The Passion For Writing?

There are times when we all ask this. There are times, like Marlon James said in his Booker Prize speech, that we think about giving up. The mountainside is too steep, the track too worn and our shoes too threadbare to carry on. Then there are writers who say, ‘I can do nothing else. I…

New Work Ethic: Going Back to the Past

When I started writing full time in my twenties I had a strict work ethic of writing in the morning and doing admin the afternoon; doing all those little niggly things that had to be done to be a writer and pay the bills. If I feel myself stray, I stab myself with a metaphorical…

How New Wave Came to Me Via Tripods

They invaded my world when I was nine. I’d seen the 1953 version of The War of the Worlds back to back with It Came for Beneath the Sea. I was, and still am, a big Ray Harryhausen fan. I grew up on Sinbad and Ray introduced me to Raquel Welsh and dinosaurs, though at the age…

Ted Hughes Poetry Festival 2015

This summer I will be reading at the Ted Hughes Poetry Festival (3rd-5th July, 2015). I will be  reading on the Saturday (4th July) with Lindsey Holland and Cathy Galvin at Mexborough Business Centre, Conference Room. This is a free event and the whole festival reclaims Ted Hughes as a South Yorkshire poet.

Practice & Craft: Carys Bray

I managed to sit down with Carys Bray recently to discuss her practice and craft. I have a confession, Carys and I have taught with each other for years, and we regularly talk about books and marking (hence she mentions in the interview about marking Creative Writing students). However, Carys and I have never really…

Poetics: Ian Parks

The Wheel The pithead used to dominate the town. My dead forefathers came and went, were buried in the shadow cast by it. I passed it on my way to school, heard its revolutions in the night. If the pit head was the place’s heart the great wheel was its soul. And then there was…

The North Has Risen and Showered

There is always the cry that the North (not the north because let’s face facts while Southern counties where scratching in the dirt, the North had created the North) ‘will rise!’ The truth is that we have risen, showered, breakfasted and gone to work, some of us in the very industries that used to be…

Technology vs The Word

I am sat here listening to early Billy Bragg EPs (yes, that’s vinyl) and pondering over my practice as a writer. I have had some growing concerns over technology during the last twelve months. Now, don’t get me wrong, I have been at the forefront of a technological revolution as a writer, I embraced the…

The Burning House

Each generation blames the last. It’s part of the scorched suburbia plan. It has nothing to do with hipsters or emos, goths, grunge kids, new romantics, punks, hippies, teddy boys and beatniks. That is only one part of its delivery into your home, in your psyche, into the way you walk, talk and think. In…

Next Generation Poets

I have watched with interest and unease the growing bile bucket that is slopping over the internet. What could be causing such vitriol on social media? Poetry. To be specific it’s the Next Generation Poets list. The twenty poets who are the next best thing for poetry. The arguments on social media are like the…

The Death of the eBook

Today I have had to call time on Goggle. The book publisher which grew out of the ashes of Incwriters started initially in 2010 as online poetry readings before graduating into eBooks. Back then we were full of hope but a insidious thing has occurred with eBooks, something that was meant to be a revolution…