Sunday 26 August 2007

Welcome to Eudora

One of the best jobs I've ever had was reading Mimi Thebo's new novel, Welcome to Eudora, and asking her questions about it; Random House has posted the resulting interview online. The book is only available in the States, but if you're interested in a rollicking portrayal of small town life in the Midwest, it's worth ordering from afar. I read most of the novel on flights from Bristol to Chicago, and I hardly noticed the time, I laughed so much.

Friday 24 August 2007

American short-story writer Grace Paley has died

I am sorry to report that Grace Paley has died; the Guardian obituary is here. I treasure her book, Enormous Changes at the Last Minute, and look forward to reading the others.

The Nation has published this tribute by Katha Pollitt.

Wednesday 22 August 2007

Guantanamo Bay Poetry

Click on the title above to read this article from The Wall Street Journal. What is it going to take for these prisoners to be given due process?

Friday 17 August 2007

Friday 10 August 2007

Autumn Poetry Events &c. in or near Bath

On Monday, 3 September, Canadian poet Rhona McAdam reads at The Raven in Bath. The start time is 8 p.m., and there is also an open mike.

On Wednesday, 19 September, as part of the Bradford on Avon Arts Festival, I will emcee an open poetry and music night at The George on Woolley Street in Bradford on Avon. The start time is 7:30, but arrive between 7 and 7:30 to sign up.

From 21-30 September, the first Bath Festival of Children's Literature will be held in Bath; it includes children's poetry events.

October 4 is National Poetry Day; this year's theme is "dreams." If you know of NPD events in or near Bath, please let me know (carrie dot etter at gmail dot com).

On October 10, the first meeting of my course, The Opportunities of Form, will run at The Bath Royal Literary and Scientific Institute from 7-9 p.m. The class has five biweekly meetings a term and meets for three terms. This year we'll study the dramatic monologue, the prose poem, and the use of the line in free verse. If you'd like more information, please email me; if you'd like to enroll, you can do so here.

On October 11, this year's Stand Up Poetry: The Bath Spa University Reading Series will begin with a reading by Les Murray, location TBA.

On October 17, Tim Liardet's course, The Poetry Surgery (an open poetry workshop), will begin at BRLSI (enrollment as per my course mentioned above).

On November 15, I will emcee and read on the third annual Irish Poetry Night at The George in Bradford on Avon. A band playing Irish traditional music will perform at intervals throughout the evening. Other readers include Donald Gibson, Karen Hoy, Julie-Ann Rowell, and Bronagh Slevin, with others to be announced, and we'll be reading from such poets as Eavan Boland (Rowell), Louis MacNiece (Hoy), and Peter Sirr (me); Northern Irish poets Gibson and Slevin will also read from their own work.

I'll repost this notice with further readings as I receive information.

Wednesday 8 August 2007

Lytton Smith and publicising poetry

Here's an interview with my friend, the poet Lytton Smith, who works as a poetry publicist in NYC for both Persea and Four Way Books. Anyone thinking about improving the publicising of their own collection(s) should find it interesting and useful.

Monday 6 August 2007

The Company I Keep

"Without doubt, the very best institutions in the UK for poetry, such as Newcastle, St Andrew’s, Lancaster, Warwick, Bath Spa and Wales’s own Glamorgan and Aberystwyth, for example, offer undeniable calibre among the faculty, featuring names such as Bill Herbert, the aforementioned Sean O’Brien and Douglas Dunn, Kathleen Jamie, Don Paterson, Paul Farley, David Morley, Tim Liardet, Carrie Etter, Sheenagh Pugh and Matthew Francis. Critically acclaimed poets all."

--Kathryn Gray, Poetry Wales, Summer 2007

Saturday 4 August 2007

Austin the Astronaut

I'm taking a break from reviewing, instead organising old photos. This one, taken last year, is of my nephew Austin at the Museum of Science and Technology in Chicago. I had to share it.

Thursday 2 August 2007

Charles Simic Named US Poet Laureate

A poet laureate whose work I personally admire and find invigorating--hurrah! The New York Times' article is here, though I think you'll have to register with NYT to read it.