The Next Big Thing

I’ve been tagged by the very talented poet Kirsten Irving to give this interview for an expanding blog project called The Next Big Thing. You can read her interview here! The idea is to post mine and tag other writers to do the same on 9 January 2013. Where did the idea come from for the book? I…

‘Give’ by Simon Armitage

I’ve reread this poem and am startled by the building-up of suspense and surprise in it. It’s aptly entitled ‘Give’ not ‘Giving’, the verb insistent and almost pleading. Beginning with ‘of all the public places, dear / To make a scene, I’ve chosen here’, it makes the reader rather uneasy about what will happen next,…

where grows creativity, in wilderness?

Food for thought at the upcoming discussion in Hong Kong Literary Festival on 11 October, 7.30pm, Dr Hari Harilela Lecture Theatre (Shaw Campus) Baptist University. Simon Armitage (author of many collections including Seeing Stars by Faber and Faber), Prof Daniel Chua (Head of School of Humanities, HKU), Prof Lo Kwai Cheung (Professor, Department of English Language and…

Thoughts after Michael Marks Poetry Pamphlets Awards

After the Michael Marks Poetry Pamphlets awards and poetry reading event, I am now in possession of three award-winning pamphlets by James McGonigal, Olive Broderick and Sophie Robinson. These very slim and yet thoughtfully made volumes are absolute gems. For one thing, they rarely sit smugly on bookshelves in chain bookstores. You have to make…