We have now announced our full poetry list for the coming year and the buzz is well and truly alive! After such a turbulent year in 2020, it felt almost unreal to be ushering in a new set of books so quickly. But of course that is the nature of publishers, to move from year to year with new voices, new releases, new challenges and ideas. 2020 felt like a year that everything and nothing happened, so whilst we prepare for our first 2021 release we are throwing the curtain back to recap on our wonderful collections from last year with three online events. (The first event is next week and you can get donation based tickets from eventbrite.)
Looking forward, we are preparing for another full year of book releases despite the current non-gig climate. The internet has become such a resourceful place to share work, and as spoken word poets we are lucky that it takes relatively less time and equipment to organise an event, than it does to arrange a band practice with four people from different households. Our poetry lists always attract attention and excitement from a range of readers and fellow poets and we are still confident that our books can make an impact.
So let’s have a look through at our upcoming titles! Our schedule starts slightly later this year on 1st April with the lord of the spoken word solo show – Rob Gee! You might have seen him at a Hammer & Tongue over the years, or his shows at Edinburgh Fringe. He is in fact international with his award-winning shows and his debut collection – The Day My Head Exploded will be another adaption of performance poetry. Cat Hepburn makes her BE debut with her second collection Dating & Other Hobbies at the end of April, a really fun look at modern dating with all of Cat’s flare for language and storytelling. This book comes with some illustrations and a delicious looking cover!
Our (1 of 2) pamphlet releases is this May with a new edition of Desree‘s brilliant self-published chapbook I Find My Strength in Simple Things. The new edition includes original QR codes, new pieces and edits, as well as a newly designed cover. Robert Garnham follows with this third collection Yay! A joyful book that we can all do with! As we get into the summer months, expect greatness from Casey Bailey‘s revenant new collection Please Do Not Touch, a layered look at structural racism in museums and on the streets. Stephen Lightbown returns with an exciting follow up to his first book – The Last Custodian is the post apocalyptic survivor story of a paraplegic man and is a wicked read!
Let’s bounce back to 2014 for a second, when we started working with acclaimed storyteller Rachel Rose Reid on her formative book I Am Hans Christain Andersen, which we are now preparing to release in June this year. The book is a look at Andersen’s life and the stark reality of fairytales and their origins. The story book will include original artwork.
After some rejigging, we are delighted to release hilarious and warm Tina Sederholm‘s This Is Not Therapy in July. Tina is a powerhouse performer, her presence is as commanding as her writing and this frank talking collection bounces between life, ageing and the healing power of art. Following in August is Not Dancing with Ingrid Pitt by Andrew Graves. A beautiful cinematic look at relationships and working class life, drawing on Andrew’s love of cult cinema.
It seems so far away, but September will be here soon enough and with it two debuts from poets at different points in their careers entirely – the first, Nigrescence, from newcomer Adbullah Adekola. If you’re based in the north you might know Adekola already, there is a peace about his performances though his subject matter is deep and searching into blackness and cultural identity. We are excited to introduce his work to a wider readership. The second book is Fontanelle by Bristol poet Helen Sheppard. We have known Helen in the scene for a long time, quietly lifting others up and sharpening her own skill along the way. This definitive collection will showcase Helen’s beloved work on nursing, mental health and the complexities of caring.
As the weather gets colder we are prepared to light a large bonfire for you to keep warm with. Around the fire we share Interdimensional Traveller by deaf queer poet DL Williams, who will create a multidimensional way to interact with their work as a performance artist, using the english written language, body language and sign language as the collection entangles QR codes to videos.
For more heat, we have the much anticipated debut collection from international (and Bristolian) poetry idol Muneera Pilgrim with That day she’ll relate her chronicles – a journey through the cultural benchmarks of a muslim woman looking for belonging and familiar voices in a post colonial shift. Following this is our last title, but no means least. Deanna Rodger returns with His Fingers Have Left. A pamphlet of poems inspired by her work with University of Bristol Theatre Collection and the Kevin Eylot Award. Deanna shows off her expertise of technical poetry writing based on five of Eylot’s plays.
To find out more information on each title and the author, please have a look through our 2021 programme below.
Looking forward to our most influencial year yet.
Bridget Hart – editor