Information for Applicants:
Creative Writing News and Events
MARTIN GOODMAN APPOINTED AT PLYMOUTH UNIVERSITY
Martin Goodman, who gained his doctorate at Lancaster this year, has been appointed as Lecturer in English and Creative Writing at Plymouth University, from July. This is a new appointment to the department, which recently relocated to the City Centre campus where a new 36 million pound Arts Building is opening this October. Martin was examined for his PhD in Creative Writing in January 2007: the degree was awarded for his novel, Ectopia: The Family Bible, and his reflective thesis.
BOOKS FORTHCOMING FROM FORMER LANCASTER CREATIVE WRITING MAs
Two of Lancaster's former Creative Writing MA students have books of poetry soon due for publication. In her debut collection, Full Depth: the Raymond Knister Poems (April 2007, Wolsak & Wynn), Micheline Maylor considers the circumstances surrounding Raymond Knister's sudden death and captures the voices of those caught up in this tragedy with deft poems. Abigail Zammit's Voices from the Land of Trees is forthcoming in June 2007, published by Smokestack Books. Its poems, which tell the story of Guatemala's thirty-six years of civil war, are spoken by many different voices - mothers, missionaries, children, soldiers, guerrillas, Indians, students and journalists - each struggling to be heard above the sound of gunfire and weeping, each trying to break the silence.
GERALDINE GREEN READING AT THE WORDSWORTH TRUST GRASMERE
The 2007 Summer Readings at The Wordsworth Trust Grasmere will include Lancaster University Creative Writing PhD student and teacher, Geraldine Green. When asked how she felt about it, Cumbrian poet Geraldine said it was a great honour to read where so many fine poets have read, such as Galway Kinnell, Anne Stevenson, Lemm Sissay and Seamus Heaney and where she remembers going to on school trips from Ulverston. Geraldine will be reading at The Trust on Tuesday 4th September. She will also be reading as part of The Women's Arts International Festival, Brewery Arts, Kendal in May.
SHAMSHAD KHAN PERFORMING HER POEMS
Poet and performance-artist Shamshad Khan will be performing poems from her new collection, Megalomaniac, on Tuesday 20 th March at George Fox Lecture Theatre 1, 10 - 11 am. Click here for the poster.
VOICES OF AFRICA
Issue 118 of the Edinburgh Review highlights work by emergent African writers from 'Crossing Borders', Graham Mort's pioneering educational project at Lancaster University. The launch of Voices of Africa will be on Thursday 28th October at Blackwell's Bookshop, 53-62 Southbridge, Edinburgh at 6.30. Click here for more information on this issue of the Edinburgh Review.
This Michaelmas Term, two distinguished novelists read from and talk about their writing in progress: Jim Crace on 12th October and Sarah Hall on 19th October. Click here for further details.
Paul Farley (Creative Writing) will be presenting a BBC series on Wilfred Owen on Radio 3 in November.
Sara Maitland's memoir, The Book of Silence, about her search for silence, is to be published by Granta. After a noisy upbringing as one of six children, and adulthood as a vocal feminist and mother amidst the busy life of a vicarage, Maitland began to crave silence more and more strongly - and discovered she had this in common with other menopausal women. Over the past five years, she has spent periods of silence in the Sinai desert, the Australian bush, and a remote cottage on Skye. Her memoir of these experiences will be interwoven with the history of silence through fairy-tale and primal myth, Western and Eastern religious spiritual traditions, the Enlightenment and 20th century psychoanalysis, up to the current ambivalence towards silence in contemporary society. Sara is one of the Department's Visiting Lecturers in Creative Writing.
The Bowery Poetry Club in New York, hosted a rich tapestry of poetry readings this week, as a combination of British and American poets read their works in a program billed as "UKNY" by organizers. On hand to read were British poets Geraldine Green and Linda Graham. Joining them from the New York area were Steve Dalachinsky, Amy Ouzoonian, Angelo Verga, Rhonda Ward and George Wallace. Read Geraldine's account of her readings. See a clip of Geraldine reading at: http://www.poetryvlog.com/.
Sophie Duffy has won First Place for her novel, The Generation Game. One of the Yeovil Literary Prize judges, Katie Fforde comments: "This is very powerful writing. You draw your reader in immediately and combine wit and poignancy to very powerful effect…Excellent." Sophie Duffy says: "I started writing as a young mother of three children and have won a number of competitions and had a couple of short stories published. I wrote a novel for my MA in Creative Writing which I completed by distance learning at Lancaster. Last year, my family and I returned to my home town, Teignmouth, where I started work on The Generation Game in between haggling with builders and settling in three disgruntled children. Winning this prize has given me great encouragement to fulfil my ambitions of being a published novelist and doing a PhD." Click here to read more about Sophie.
We're delighted to report that Lancaster University PhD student Ray Robinson has struck a two-book deal with Picador for his first novel Electricity and a subsequent book. Ray has been studying under the supervision of Graham Mort and Electricity forms the main body of his doctoral submission. Electricity was published on 17th March. Click here for the Guardian review of Electricity. Comments from Ray Robinson in 'What Students Say'.
The BBC have set up the biggest ever literacy campaign called RaW. It is aimed at adults across the UK with intermediate reading and writing skills. Lancaster University Creative Writing PhD student Muli Amaye has been commissioned by the BBC as a workshop facilitator to work at grassroots level with 65 RaW centres throughout the North, including Scotland and Northern Ireland. She will be running workshops with participants who are reluctant readers and will hopefully instil a sense that there is a book out there that they will enjoy. She'll be using 'Quick Reads' books that have been written by well known authors and are no longer than 128 pages. This phase of the project will run until 15 June 2006. Info at bbc.co.uk/raw/campaign.
The week of 27 January-3rd February saw the release of Frozen, a film scripted by Dr Jayne Steel (Department of English and Creative Writing), whose research covers both literary theory and filmscript writing. Frozen, directed by Juliet McKeon, was the winner of eleven awards at International Film Festvals, including a Bafta Best Actress Award (Scotland) for Shirley Henderson, releases on sixteen screens across the UK on Friday 27th January 2006. It centres on Kath, who, two years after the mysterious disappearance of her older sister, believes she has found a gateway to a place in which her sister is still alive. Set within the stark beauty of Morecambe Bay, Frozen is a story about unresolved loss and the inherent danger of hope turning into obsession. See www.frozenfilm.com
It was officially announced on Monday that Glaydah Namukasa, a Ugandan Crossing Borders participant of 3 years standing, won the Macmillan Writers' Prize for Africa 2005 with her story Voice of a Dream. The book will be published by Macmillan. The prize award ceremony will be held in September this year when the book will be launched. The judge's comments on Glaydah's book are copied below:
'A sincere and well-structured story, taking on the real issue of a teenage girl coping with the fallout from AIDS in her family, and resolutely following her dream. Namukasa demonstrates a warm understanding of teenage frustrations; the courage of her heroine shines through.'
Click here for more about Glaydah Namukasa.
English & Creative Writing have formed an associate partnership with the British and Irish Contemporary Poetry Conference, which was launched at the Royal Festival Hall on 8th December 2005 having secured funding from the Arts Council of England. This annual Conference aims 'to promote grounded, literate academic criticism, and serious dialogue between poets, critics and the academy', and gives Lancaster a major role alongside St Anne's College, Oxford, Queen's University, Belfast, and St Andrews University, with representatives on the Editorial and Management Committee and Advisory Board. The Conference will combine papers on British and Irish contemporary poetry written originally in English, with a series of readings and lectures by leading poets; the first host is St Anne's in September 2006.
Lancaster University Creative Writing PhD student, Martin Goodman, has just received an Authors' Foundation Award from the Society of Authors. The grant supports research work on his biography, 'The Extreme Life of J.S.Haldane', bought by Simon & Schuster UK for delivery in December 2006. Research trips planned include forays down mines and sewers, to the summit of Pikes Peak in Colorado, and across the trenches of the First World War, as well as to the main cache of Haldane correspondence in the University of British Columbia. For his PhD, Martin is working on a novel under the supervision of Graham Mort and Lee Horsley. Meanwhile a new novel, 'Slippery When Wet', is due out from Transita in January.
Paul Farley is one of the inaugural poets featured on The Poetry Archive, the world’s premier online resource for readers, teachers, students and anybody interested in hearing poetry read. The Archive is a treasure-trove of English-language poets reading their own work. Some are historic recordings, some have been made specially for the Archive - which means its range is the widest possible: from Tennyson at the end of the c19, through poets such as Allen Ginsberg and Langston Hughes in the middle of the c20, to significant contemporary voices. You can enjoy listening free of charge. The Archive was launched on November 30th 2005 at the British Library. Visit the archive at www.poetryarchive.org
Trans-Scriptions - writing culture location: seminar discussion plus readings from contemporary writers. Retrospection will be held at the Storey Institute, Lancaster, on Wed. 7 December 2005, 3.00pm. This event will focus upon academic and creative writings that have developed in relation to decolonisation - defined variously as post-war European, postcolonial, Black British, British-Asian, first or second-generation migrant writing. Academic speakers: Dr. Denise DeCaires-Narain (Sussex University); Dr. Alison Donnell (Nottingham Trent University); Writers: Mimi Khalvati, poet; Abdulrazak Gurnah, novelist.
Click here for more details on the STYLE IN FICTION SYMPOSIUM (SIFS) that takes place on Saturday, 11 March 2006. The organisers want Lancaster staff and students to be able to attend (and have lunch and other refreshments) free of charge, and have initially set up an 'allowance' of 20 free places for this purpose. If the number of applications goes over that allowance, they will try to extend it so that, if possible, everyone who wants to attend can. If any English department staff or postgraduate students want to attend, they need to fill in the registration form on the symposium website and send it to Elaine Heron, departmental conferences secretary, or to the email address set up for the symposium (email@example.com).
The Faculty is pleased to announce the success of its bid for provision of laptops for PhD students (notification of this success came too late to include it in the University Prospectus for 2006/7). As a result of a successful Capital Expenditure bid to Hefce, all new full-time campus based PhD students in the Faculty will be eligible to receive a laptop, which they will be able to keep throughout their (up to) four years of study.
Paul Farley has won the Forward Prize for Best Single Poem in memory of Michael Donaghy with "Liverpool Disappears for a Billionth of a Second". Farley won the Forward Best First Collection in 1998 with The Boy from the Chemist is here to see you (Picador) and was shortlisted for the prestigious Forward Best Collection prize in 2002 with his second collection The Ice Age (Picador). Read Paul Farley's winning poem.
Crossing Borders is an exciting new initiative that uses information technology to link young writers in Africa with experienced mentors in the UK. The Crossing Borders website provides information about the background to the project and features profiles of some mentors and participants. Now online: the first edition of a new virtual literature journal, Crossing Borders magazine.
George Green, Hawk (Bantam Press, August 2005): Rome, AD 34. While the Emperor Tiberius indulges himself in Capri, his cruel and self-serving regent Sejanus rules in his place. It is a time of tyranny and terror. Once a charioteer but now a hunter providing wild animals for Rome's voracious Games, Serpicus longs for a quiet life. But Sejanus' uncle has made him an offer he cannot refuse. He must journey north, over the Aips, deep into Germany where the tribes are in revolt against their Imperial oppressors, and there take possession of an exceptionally rare but dangerous beast… "Tremendous, action-packed historical adventure from the author of the acclaimed Hound." Available from Amazon. For more details see http://www.george-green.co.uk/hawk.htm
We're pleased to announce that Nigel McLoughlin, who successfully completed his PhD under the supervision of Professor David Craig, has had the poems written for his doctoral study, 'Blood', published in book form by Bluechrome press. See: http://www.bluechrome.co.uk/store/shop/item.asp?itemid=53&catid=
Click here for comments from Nigel McLoughlin in 'What Students Say'.
Lancaster's programme of international writing residencies continues with the arrival of Ugandan prose writer Jackee Batanda. This residency is a partnership between the Lancaster University and Litfest. Jackee will work at the University and with community groups in the north-west. She will be resident from January-March 2005, returning to perform at Litfest in November 2005.
The Lancaster Litfest took place November 9-13 at the Dukes Theatre in town. Highlights included renowned poet Carol Ann Duffy, our 'Litfest author' Simon Kerr (under his alternative pen-name of Chris Kerr), and our very own lecturers George Green and Jo Baker, reading from their latest novels. Click here for the festival brochure describing the entire event.
NAWE Autumn Conference 2005: Writer as (self) critic: NAWE's Autumn Conference was held on 18th-19th November at Lancaster University, in association with St Martin's College. Click here for full details of this event.
Poetry Reading: Professor Laurence Lieberman, from Illinois, is a highly respected writer who has published twelve collections of poetry and three volumes of literary essays. On Thursday 27th October he read and discussed his poetry (with accompanying slides) in Bowland Senior Common Room.