Vessel: the first podcast, with Cat Woodward

This year I founded Vessel, a new indie zine exploring poems as containers. Joining me to guest edit issue one is my long-time collaborator and friend Cat Woodward. As the submissions window for issue one draws to a close (23:59 BST on 28 August – more info here) we thought we’d do a short podcast about Vessel, the poems we love and what Cat will be looking for from the submissions we receive.

You can now listen to the podcast here and read the transcript over on the Vessel site. We talk about “open” poems, having a dig around inside words, and the spirit of Ursula Le Guin’s Carrier Bag Theory.

While I regularly interview authors for The Writing Life podcast, this is the first podcast I have produced and edited by myself and it has been a great learning curve. I can’t wait for the next episode in this very occasional podcast series, which will be in a few months time with the guest editor of issue 2… to be announced!

NCW The Writing Life podcast: exploring themes through characters with Ayọ̀bámi Adébáyọ̀

A while ago I was lucky enough to have the chance to sit down with Ayọ̀bámi Adébáyọ̀ and talk to her about her award-winning debut novel Stay With Me, particularly looking at how she uses character to allow her to explore bigger themes of women’s lives, chronic illness, and family life in turbulent times. Our conversation is now available on the NCW The Writing Life podcast, and you can listen here.

NCW The Writing Life podcast: from teacher to writer with Ashley Hickson-Lovence

The Writing Life with Ashley Hickson-Lovence

In the autumn I had the pleasure of talking to poet and novelist Ashley Hickson-Lovence for the National Centre for Writing’s The Writing Life podcast. We talked about writing around the day job, committing to one’s writing practice through further study, and the joys of indie publishing. Listen to the end for Ashley’s top tips for fellow writers; his method of having a few stated aims for each project really resonated with me because you’re then writing by design, and it informs the writing on a technical level, too – it all comes back to the effect you want to create in the reader. Listen here.