Category Archives: literature

PhD Studentship: Devolved Voices

Full details of the Devolved Voices PhD studentship are now available here. The topic of the PhD will be the role of women poets since Wales’s devolution ‘yes’ vote in 1997, especially those whose reputations have been established since that time. The PhD will be supervised by Professor Peter Barry, Principal Investigator for the Devolved Voices project. The studentship – which begins in September 2012 and covers fees and maintenance – offers the opportunity to participate in pioneering research. Closing date for applications is 17 July 2012.

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Filed under criticism, literature, opportunities, poetry, scholarship

Chief Executive of Literature Wales

Following the departure of our gifted Chief Executive since 1998, Peter Finch, Literature Wales is now seeking to appoint a new leader to carry the organisation forward into an exciting and ambitious future.

We are seeking an individual with a raft of energy, creative and entrepreneurial flair, and the ability to provide a truly inspirational and visionary leadership which reaches out to all sections of our literary community and general public. This is a rare opportunity to lead literature provision, programming and appreciation at a time of great renaissance in the two literatures of Wales. The ability to speak Welsh is essential for this post.

For further details on the job description and how to apply click here.

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Filed under literature, opportunities, the future, wales

Wales Book of the Year announced

The Wales Book of the Year 2011 was announced last night. The gong went to Parthian author John Harrison – a remarkable travel writer – for Cloud Road, a book recounting his adventures walking the great road of the Incas, the Camino Real. John’s a very nice man as well as being accomplished. This recognition of his work is pleasing indeed – and it comes with a £10,000 cheque, too, which is always handy for a writer. Also on the shortlist were Alistair Reynolds, for his SF novel Terminal World, and the unique Pascale Petit, for her arresting verse biography of Frida Kahlo, What the Water Gave Me – a poetry collection from 2010 which I’ve especially admired.

It was heartening to see such an intelligent but varied collection of books and genres from the judges – from the longlist right through to the shortlist. Francesca Rhydderch, Jon Gower and Deborah Kay Davies have done, I think, a very fine job of producing a list of books from Wales or with Welsh connections that reminds us all of the leaps and bounds our literature has made since the renaissance that began a decade ago.

I should add that the Readers’ Choice Award went to Tyler Keevil for Fireball. If you haven’t read it yet, then do. It’s a wonderful, gripping, moving, coming-of-age novel, with echoes of Hinton’s The Outsiders, King’s The Body (later made into the iconic film Stand by Me) and Nicholas Ray’s star-making Rebel Without a Cause. In a wonderful twist on our open and international nation, Tyler’s a Canadian, the book is set in Vancouver, and he’s published by Wales’s Parthian Books. I interviewed Tyler last year, and it proved to be one of the most enjoyable conversations I’ve ever had with an author about their book. He knows what he’s about and what the work is about. Good luck to him with his future projects.

So: congratulations to the winners. And congratulations to all those who made their way onto the longlist in such a vintage year.

You can find out more here. And to discover more about Literature Wales which administers the Wales Book of the Year, among many other crucial activities in promoting Welsh literature, click here.

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Filed under literature, literature promotion, the best of the best, wales

On the Thought of Frivolous Things

I have been away. I have been here, there and everywhere. Moving furniture behind the scenes. Metaphorically speaking. Of which, I can say no more. I would sleep, but there is still more work to do. It is exciting work. So I cannot complain. I’ll update this blog with some bits and bobs of the usual persuasion soon. But that is for week commencing 13/06/11. Monday.

I will leave you with this thought. Behold my most treasured of shoes! I fondled them earlier. Couldn’t help it. I do this periodically. 

See how forlorn they look without me in them, dancing. But their time will come! I’ll take them to Paris, and we’ll stay up late – listening to bad acid jazz, drinking Ricard. I am just not sure when. For the time being, there is hope, love and always, always books.
Happy Weekend! And more next week!

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Filed under beauty, books, joy, literature, My So-Called Life