JL Williams on representation of women in recent poetry events/publishing

Ace blog entry here on the Scottish Poetry Library’s site from Jennifer Williams, their programme manager and all-out poet hero imho.

Jennifer covers the recent StAnza festival in St Andrews (which I was sad not to make it up to this year, though grateful for this and for Dave Coates’ reports back), and talks about recent publishing of and aimed at women. I share with her the desire to get on and read Vahni Capildeo’s Measures of Expatriation and Claudia Rankine’s Citizen.

Check out JL’s last book, Locust and Marlin, reviewed also by Greg Thomas in Hix Eros not so long ago. I love the below picture of her performing at Cooper Gallery in Dundee recently.



Scottish Book Trust advice on Poetry Publishing

Liked this article on Scottish Book Trusts’ page as it seems more up to date than some of the other advice about ‘getting your work published’ that I’ve seen. Particularly I like the awareness that getting into magazines is as much about a preparedness to seek response for your work, rather than just getting a ‘track record’* of publishing. Also I like that the panel whose discussion this article reports on are showing an eagerness for new formats that include records of live performance: mixed-format is an area of poetry publishing that I think is making the most of that fact that there are many interesting poets who have a very both/and approach to the old page versus stage division.

*is ‘track record’ a metaphor about athletics? I’ve never thought about it before!

p.s. On the subject of interesting word use, rather than anything connected to the preceding content, I was really struck today, thinking about the word ‘minority’ meaning pre-adulthood, or something like it, as opposed to just the smaller category out of several. I don’t know why I was surprised, because the use of ‘minor’ to mean child is very common, but I’d never before made the connection that ‘minor’ and ‘minority’ were nearly the same word. It was this poem by Edwin Muir that got me onto the inside of the word with its very clever and particular, and well-loaded and placed I think, use of the word. I love what it does in my head. Also now I have Miss Jean Brodie in my head stating, ‘I am in my prime’, which I presume is mathematically a little different from her majority…