Biographies of contributors

 

S. Niroshini

S. Niroshini is a writer and poet based in London. She received Third Prize in the Poetry London Prize 2020 and a London Writers Award 2019 for Literary Fiction. Her work focuses on the intersection of language, art, history and the body and the experiences of girlhood. Her poetry pamphlet Darling Girl (Bad Betty Press, 2021) begins with a long ekphrastic sequence that reflects on the history of photography. Her writing has also appeared in The Good Journal, On Bodies: An Anthology by 3 of Cups Press and harana poetry.

Dominic O’Sullivan 

Dominic O’Sullivan is a writer of poems, plays and short stories. A number of his plays have been performed in Cambridge, London, Norwich and Ely with some of the short stories adapted for stage performance. His poems have appeared in The Fenland Poetry Journal and The Fenland Reed as well as Poetry and Covid, a project funded by the Arts Council. He lives in Ely.

Stephen Payne

Stephen Payne is Professor Emeritus at the University of Bath, where until September 2020 he taught and conducted research in Cognitive Science. He lives in Penarth in the Vale of Glamorgan.  His first full-length poetry collection, ‘Pattern Beyond Chance’, was published by HappenStance Press in 2015 and shortlisted for Wales Book of the Year. His second collection, ‘The Windmill Proof’ was published by the same press in September 2021. A pamphlet, ‘The Wax Argument And Other Thought Experiments’ is forthcoming in January 2022.

Katrina Porteous

Katrina Porteous lives on the Northumberland coast. Her collections from Bloodaxe include: The Lost Music, Two Countries, and Edge, which began as a collaboration with a planetarium and the late electronic composer, Peter Zinovieff. The final piece in the series, Under the Ice, about polar science, premiered in June. This year Katrina received a Society of Authors Cholmondeley Award. Recent projects include The Bird Roads, a collaboration with wildlife sound recordist Geoff Sample, and Ingenious for the ‘Inventive’ Podcast series. Katrina is a contributor to Living-Language-Land for COP26. Her latest publication is Sea Change with Phoebe Power (Guillemot, 2021). 

Phoebe Power

Phoebe Power was born in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, grew up in Cumbria and currently lives in York. She is the author of Harp Duet (2016) and Shrines of Upper Austria (Carcanet, 2018), which was awarded the Forward Prize for Best First Collection and a Somerset Maugham Award, shortlisted for the T.S. Eliot Prize and the Seamus Heaney Prize, and a Poetry Book Society Recommendation. Her most recent publication is Sea Change, an illustrated pamphlet based on a commission from the National Trust about the Durham Coast (Guillemot Press, 2021, with Katrina Porteous). Her new full-length work, Book of Days, is forthcoming from Carcanet in Spring 2022. 

Vidyan Ravinthiran

The child of Sri Lankan Tamils, Vidyan Ravinthiran grew up in a mixed area of Leeds and now teaches at Harvard. He has published two books of poetry and an award-winning study of Elizabeth Bishop’s writing. The Million-Petalled Flower of Being Here (2019) won a Northern Writers Award, was a PBS Recommendation, and was shortlisted for the Forward and the T.S. Eliot Prizes. It is also shortlisted for the Ledbury Munthe Second Collection Prize. He helps organise Ledbury Emerging Critics, a UK/US scheme for increasing racial diversity in review-culture. 

Calum Rodger

Calum Rodger is a Glasgow-based poet working in performance, print and digital forms. A former Scottish Slam Champion, lately Rodger’s work has been dedicated to exploring the interfaces between poetry and videogames, with works such as PORTS (SPAM Press, 2019) – classic twentieth-century poems reimagined as videogame instructions – Rock, Star, North. – a poetic travelogue for performance set in the Grand Theft Auto V universe – and Gotta Eat the Plums! with William Carlos Williams – a ludic retro-game adaptation of the most famous poem in the world about plums. Much of this work can be found at his website ontographicmetagaming.wordpress.com.

Endre Ruset

Endre Ruset was born in 1981 in Molde, Norway. He is a poet, radio host, literary critic and translator. Ruset has recently translated Sharon Olds’ Odes (2016) into Norwegian. His previous books of poetry include Ribbeinas Vingespenn, (Gyldendal, 2001), Kims lek, (Gyldendal, 2005), Prosjektil, (k.ø.s, 2012), Elsket og savnet, Kolon publishing (2014), Noriaki, Flamme Forlag (2017) and Det, a translation of the late Inger Christensen’s The for Pax (2017). He has been awarded a Bjørnson Scholarship (2005) and the prestigious Bookkeeper Scholarship (2015). He also represented Norway at Poetry Parnassus in London 2012.

Anna Saunders

Anna Saunders has been described as ‘a poet who surely can do anything’ by The North, ‘a modern myth maker’ by Paul Stephenson, and Tears in the Fence said ‘her poetry is reminiscent of Plath – with all its alpha achievement and radiance’.
She is the author of Communion, (Wild Conversations Press), Struck, (Pindrop Press) Kissing the She Bear, (Wild Conversations Press), Burne Jones and the Fox, Ghosting for Beginners and Feverfew (all Indigo Dreams).
Feverfew has been described as ‘rich with obsession, sensuousness and potency’ by Ben Ray, and as ‘a beautiful and necessary collection’ by Penny Shuttle.
She is also the Executive Director of Cheltenham Poetry Festival. 

Robert Selby

Robert Selby is a freelance writer and edits King’s College London’s online poetry journal, Wild Court. He co-edited Mick Imlah: Selected Prose (Peter Lang, 2015) and his debut pamphlet was published in 2017, in the Clutag Five Poems series. His debut collection, The Coming-Down Time, was published by Shoestring Press in 2020. 

Maria Sledmere

Maria Sledmere is editor-in-chief at SPAM Press and a member of A+E Collective. In 2021, The Palace of Humming Trees, an exhibition with Katie O’Grady and Jack O’Flynn, was shown at French Street Studios. Her debut collection, The Luna Erratum, is out now with Dostoyevsky Wannabe and in 2020 she co-edited an anthology, the weird folds: everyday poems from the anthropocene, with Rhian Williams. Other publications include Chlorophyllia (OrangeApple Press), neutral milky halo (Guillemot Press) and Polychromatics (Legitimate Snack). She is currently finishing a DFA in Creative Writing at the University of Glasgow. 

Jon Stone

Jon Stone is a Derbyshire-born writer, editor and researcher. He won an Eric Gregory Award in 2012 and the Poetry London Prize in 2014 and 2016. School of Forgery (Salt, 2012) was chosen as a Poetry Book Society Recommendation, and he has since released three pamphlets: Tomboys (Tungsten Press, 2016), Unravelanche (Broken Sleep, 2021) and Sandsnarl (The Emma Press, 2021). He designs and edits collaborative mixed media anthologies with Sidekick Books and has a PhD in poem-videogame hybrids. Dual Wield: The Interplay of Poetry and Videogames will be released by DeGruyter in December this year.

Agnieszka Studzińska

Agnieszka Studzińska’s debut collection, Snow Calling was shortlisted for the London New Poetry Award 2010. Her second collection, What Things Are is published by Eyewear Publishing (2014) her most recent collection, is called Branches of a House (Shearsman Books 2021). She has poems published in The Long Poem Magazine, Butcher’s Dog, Finished Creatures Mag, The Manhattan Review among others. She teaches for the Poetry School among other educational institutions. She lives in London.

Kebedech Tekleab

Kebedech Tekleab is a poet, painter, sculptor, a student activist who fled Ethiopia  but was captured and held in a Somali concentration camp for 10 years. Since reaching USA, she teaches art at Howard University, now at Queensborough Community College, New York, and exhibits widely around USA. Her poetry collection Yetnew (Where is it?) was published by Kuraz in Addis Ababa and she has been featured in Washington Review and Songs We Learn from Trees (Carcanet, 2020).  A recent article in Addis Admas calls her a “talaq baleqine”, a great poet.

Misrak Terefe

MISRAK TEREFE is a pioneering Ethiopian poet and performer, a founding member of Tobiya Poetic Jazz that holds hugely popular monthly literary/musical events at the Ras Hotel in Addis Abeba. She is well-known for tackling difficult subjects in her work, like the appalling rape of a baby girl. She was the first female poet to put out her own VCD, and is featured on the Tobiya DVD (vol 1). She has one collection, Chew Berenda (Salt Market). Her poems have also featured in Modern Poetry in Translation, World Literature Today, Words Without Borders, Songs We Learn from Trees and the Carcanet Youtube channel.   

Pam Thompson

Pam Thompson is a writer and educator based in Leicester. Her publications include The Japan Quiz ( Redbeck Press, 2009) and Show Date and Time (Smith | Doorstop, 2006) and Strange Fashion( Pindrop Press, 2017). She is a 2019 Hawthornden Fellow.

Jonathan Totman

Jonathan was born in Sussex and now lives in Oxfordshire. His debut collection, Night Shift, was published by Pindrop Press in 2020. Jonathan is a former Fenland Poet Laureate and co-edited poetry magazine The Fenland Reed for several years. 

Shash Trevett

Shash Trevett is a poet and a translator of Tamil poetry into English. She is a winner of a Northern Writers’ Award and her pamphlet From a Borrowed Land was published by Smith|Doorstop (2021).  She is currently co-editing (with Vidyan Ravinthiran and Seni Seneviratne) an anthology of Tamil, English and Sinhala poetry from Sri Lanka and its diaspora communities. Shash is a 2021 Visible Communities Translator in Residence at the National Centre for Writing. She is a 2021 Ledbury Critic and a Board Member of Modern Poetry in Translation.

​Bedilu Wakjira

​Bedilu Wakjira is a prolific Ethiopian poet, novelist and short story writer who was born in 1960 in Asella, capital of the Arsi region of Oromia, famous for breeding champion marathon runners like Abebe Bekila and Haile Gebreselassie! He studied linguistics in Addis Ababa, did his PHD in Norway and is currently assistant professor of Language and Literature in Addis Ababa University. He has published short stories, essays and three collections of poems, Fekat Nafeqiwoch (Those who long for spring), Yetesfa Kitbat (The Hope Vaccine) and Awnet malet yene lij (Truth, my child).

Rory Waterman

Rory Waterman is Associate Professor of Modern and Contemporary Literature at Nottingham Trent University. His most recent book is Wendy Cope (Liverpool University Press, 2021), the first monograph on the poet’s work. His own full-length poetry collections, all published by Carcanet, are: Tonight the Summer’s Over (2013), a Poetry Book Society Recommendation, shortlisted for a Seamus Heaney Award; Sarajevo Roses (2017), shortlisted for the Ledbury Forte Prize for Second Collections; and Sweet Nothings (2020). He is also a critic for the TLS, PN Review and other publications, and he co-edits the pamphlet press New Walk Editions. 

Sarah Westcott

Sarah Westcott grew up in north Devon and lives on the edge of London. Her first pamphlet, Inklings, was a Poetry Book Society pamphlet choice and Slant Light (Pavilion Poetry, 2016), was highly commended in the Forward Prize. Her second collection, Bloom, also with Pavilion Poetry, was published this year. Sarah was a news journalist for twenty years and now works as a freelance tutor and writer. Work has appeared on beermats, billboards and buses, baked into sourdough bread and installed in a nature reserve, triggered by footsteps.

Chrissy Williams

Chrissy Williams is a poet, editor and tutor based in London. Her work has been regularly featured by the BBC and her first collection BEAR (Bloodaxe, 2017) was one of the Telegraph’s 50 Best Books of the Year. She is the author of numerous pamphlets, and edits the poetry magazine PERVERSE. Her second collection LOW was published by Bloodaxe in May 2021 and is an exploration of identity in the face of loss. You can follow her on social media @chrissywilliams. "Chrissy Williams is opening a new space for British experimental poetry...with its generosity towards the reader." --Marcus Slease (Shearsman)

Jemilea Wisdom-Baako

Jemilea Wisdom-Baako is a British-Jamaican poet. She is the founder of Writerz and Scribez a CIC using arts as a tool for social change, running workshops and projects with marginalised communities including those impacted by homelessness, domestic violence, refugee status, offending and mental health. A London Writers Award recipient she was shortlisted for the Rebecca Swift Women's Poetry Prize 2018 and The Bridport Poetry Prize 2020. A graduate of the Advanced Faber Poetry Course her work has been commissioned by Google UK and appears in Magma, Pittsburgh Poetry Review, Good Journal, and elsewhere.