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Lots been happening lately.

Firstly, my good friend and very talented poet Charlotte Gann was shortlisted for the Michael Marks pamphlet award. Although she was pipped at the post it was a wonderful to see her pamphlet The Long Woman make the shortlist for a big prize.

Then, I had the chance to take part in a workshop here in Lewes with Mimi Khalvati. I’ve been on the ‘reserve’ list for a while and there’s now a strong possibility I may make the cut for the autumn dates.

It’s difficult to step into an established workshopping group where everyone else knows each other, and I had decided not to attend as a ‘fill in’ any more, but if I can become a regular member I think that will be much more helpful, for me and I’m sure for everyone else, as It’s not always useful to have a stranger turn up and launch into a critique of your work.

Also in June I finished a short course at the Poetry School with Jack Underwood, all about putting together a pamphlet. It was useful and fun, although I’m not sure I’d do a regular class in Lambeth again as travel to and from isn’t easy – the class over-ran every time and because I had to run for a train it meant I missed quite a lot. More about the pamphlet in another post. Met some interesting poets on the course, including Harry Man, Madeleine Wurzburger, Steve Boorman and Olly Todd.

Although I missed the Brighton Stanza meetup last month and will miss the next (am giving a talk to the London Writers’ Cafe group about blogging) I did make it to the Pighog poetry night at the RedRoaster Cafe in Brighton last week. It was a great evening, with John Davies, John McCullough and Rosy Carrick reading – I really enjoyed Rosy’s performance and was great to finally meet the lovely John McC who I feel I already know a little via Twitter and Facebook – I’m now enjoying reading his book The Frost Fairs. I did read at the open mic (just – they called it a day and then said ‘OK, we’ll take one more reader’) and got a ‘well done’ from John Davies afterwards, which was kind of him.

PS the photo was taken in Dieppe at the weekend, where it appears to be summer.

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Robin Houghton 2021