The York Poetry Prize 2020
I am honoured to have been chosen by this year's judge, Sean O’Brien, winner of both the TS Eliot Prize and the Forward Poetry Prize, as the recipient of the Helen Cadbury Prize for poetry.
My poem, County Lines, is about a journey on a train. A teenage girl sits nervously watching her own ghost-like reflection as she travels coastward, laden with Class As. The poem investigates her motivation and casts a light on the exploitation of the vulnerable.
Sean O'Brien wrote that, ‘County Lines shows us the difference between news and knowledge. It is a terrifying poem, in which the drug dealers’ heartless practicality and cynicism leaves the young female speaker utterly exposed. It may be true that knowledge sets you free, but is there any way she can use her knowledge of how things really are to escape the labyrinth?’
I'd like to thank Sean, the team at York Literature Festival and York Mix and I'd also like to take this opportunity to congratulate all the winning and commended poets who entered the competition. There are some stunning poems here. Please take a moment to listen to them all. Click the link and enjoy some outstanding poetry.
I am honoured and absolutely thrilled to be giving a talk on the history and motivation behind Serenity Song at Pocklington School on Friday 15th November.
Tickets are available to order online - they are free too!
Ease into the weekend with a little bit of History and some Literary banter! 🧐🍀📖
August Showcase Author!
I am excited to announce that The Literary Consultancy have chosen me to be their Showcase Author for August! Their expert team of readers have helped thousands of imperfect manuscripts become something altogether more polished. A huge thank you to everyone!
I got lucky. Serenity Song was read by Imogen Robertson; North-Easterner, cheese lover and Number 1 Best Selling Author. Unsurprisingly, it is an infinitely better novel for her feedback. Click the link and decide yourself by buying the book!
Birr Library, County Offaly, Eire 27/07/19
Delivering a launch speech in a building that features in the novel, in the heart of the town that inspired it was special! Thank you, Birr and thank you to all those who attended - the media, the book club members, the local councillors and those of Birr Historical Society. And of course, my Irish family. Sláinte!
What a magical day! The sun was shining, the trains running on time. People came from North and South and converged on the medieval city of York to support Finn's official book launch. It was hectic, love-filled and dramatic. A sell-out on the day in the bookshop and a jam packed basement bar to boot. Finn signed, sighed and pontificated - and then drank his body weight in wine. Perfect! If you were there, please send through any photos that you have. And when you've read the book, please, please review it!