Anatomy of a Self Portrait

So, in the lead up to Christmas I stumbled upon a drawing set someone had given me the previous year; a neat shallow tin of sketching pencils which, I thought, was a pretty cool gift, the kind of nostalgia-laden offering that had conjured up notions of taking stock and adjusting my lifestyle, i.e., I used… Continue reading Anatomy of a Self Portrait

The Novel: Shark or Dinosaur

Late last year I had the pleasure of attending the Northern Lights Writer’s Conference, an event part sponsored by the Manchester Literature Festival, and in only its second year. I was bought the tickets by a couple of friends as a birthday present (pays to have good ones) and so, having never had the opportunity to… Continue reading The Novel: Shark or Dinosaur

Love Your Streets

Uncommonly sunny weather today so thought I’d share some brief snaps I took in and around my beloved hometown of Manchester (and Salford) in north-west England. Starting with the unusual emblem you see above. It’s the Worker Bee. Since the Industrial Revolution it has become one of the city’s most enduring emblems; created to commemorate… Continue reading Love Your Streets

‘When We Write Well, We Bear Witness to the Times’: An Interview With Poet & Author, Peter Kalu

So I recently had the good fortune to meet and then later interview playwright, poet and novelist, Peter Kalu. As well as publishing multiple short stories and several novels, Kalu has worked with the BBC and also been involved in a variety of initiatives to support young writers through his work at Commonword; a community project to promote and… Continue reading ‘When We Write Well, We Bear Witness to the Times’: An Interview With Poet & Author, Peter Kalu

Festivals and the Future

There’s nothing quite like hearing a full brass band play Daft Punk’s Get Lucky is there. Just one of many strange thoughts I found idling through my mind as I sat in Manchester’s Albert Square, or should I say Thwaites Festival Square. That’s one of the fun quirks of Manchester’s Jazz Festival, not only do popular songs get… Continue reading Festivals and the Future