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ListingsYorkshireFor additional events listings, sign up for the newsletter from New Writing North.Susan Elliot-Wright will be launching her third book What She Lost, a gripping tale of family, memory and secrets. Waterstones, Sheffield. 16 March, 6.30-8pm. www.waterstones.comMslexia at Huddersfield Literature Festival. mslexia is delightedto be taking part in the annual Huddersfield Literature Festival. Writers are invited to join our popular ‘How to write a synopsis’ workshop led by Editor Debbie Taylor (18 Mar, 10-12am); and our ‘Meet the Editors’ event (18 Mar, 3-5pm). For more information anda full list of festival activities, see website for details. University of Huddersfield. 14-19 March. www.litfest.org.ukWomen in Crime Fiction is a panel discussion with bestselling authors Sophie Hannah, Elizabeth Haynes, Nick Quantrill and Helen Cadbury, exploring how woman are portrayed as villains, victims and detectives in crime fiction. Part of York Literature Festival (16-30 Mar). York Theatre Royal Studio. 23 March, 7.45- 9.45pm. £8. www.yorkliteraturefestival.co.ukShape and Form in Poetry is a ten-week course suitable for anyone wanting to try their hand at different poetic forms. The course will lookat how published poets treat form, how it can enhance their work and why some writers throw the rules away. Centre for Lifelong Learning, University of York.19 April, 10am-12pm. £72. www.york.ac.uk/lifelonglearningHow to Write a Page Turner isa ten-week course exploring howto hook readers and make fiction impossible to put down. The course will examine how tension and excitement can be built into writing through a range of techniques and creative-writing activities. Centre for Lifelong Learning, University of York. 20 April, 7-9pm. £72. www.york.ac.uk/lifelonglearningPoems To Make Grown Women Cry is an Amnesty International event inviting local women to choose and read their favourite poem from the recently published Poems That Make Grown Women Cry. Part of Books by the Beach, Scarborough’s annual book festival (26 Apr – 1 May). Scarborough Library Concert Hall. 28 April, 10-11am. Donation for Amnesty. www.booksbythebeach.co.ukThe Good, the Bad and theUgly: Constructing Characters in Fiction is a day-course aimed at beginners discussing how to create insteresting, believable and rounded characters. As well as advice on how to avoid stereotypes. Centre for Lifelong Learning, University of York. 13 May, 9.30am-4.30pm. £35. www.york.ac.uk/lifelonglearningNorthern IrelandARTS COUNCIL OF NORTHERN IRELAND 028 9262 3555 www.artscouncil-ni.orgFor additional events listings, see www.culturenorthernireland.orgSara Baume will be reading her new novel, A Line Made by Walking.Her début novel Spill Simmer Falter Wither was Waterstones’ Irish Book of the Year. Waterstones, Belfast.16 March, 6.30pm. www.waterstones.comReading and Writing Nature Poetry is a one-day workshop offering the chance to contemplate Northern Ireland’s rich tradition of nature poetry and the contemporary voices of ecopoetry. The coursewill explore poetry’s art and craft through creative exercises that aim to deepen participants’ experiences of nature and help develop a natural poetic voice. Crescent Arts Centre, 2-4 University Road, Belfast. 25 March, 10am-4pm. £40 (£35). www.poetryni.comWriting Fiction: Settings is an afternoon workshop suitable for beginners and more experienced writers, exploring techniques writers can use to bring setting to life within their fiction. Crescent Arts Centre, 2-4 University Road, Belfast. 25 March, 2-5pm. £21 (£18). www.poetryni.comLinen Hall Reading Groupwelcomes all to come along and discuss this month’s chosen book, The Long Gaze Back, edited by Sinéad Gleeson. Linen Hall Library, Belfast. 30 March, 1.10pm. Free. www.linenhall.comScotlandCREATIVE SCOTLAND0845 603 6000 enquiries@creativescotland.com www.creativescotland.comFor additional events listings, consult www.whatsonscotland.com and www.list.co.uk.An Evening with Claire MacLearysees the author launching herdébut novel, Cross Purpose, a surprisingly gritty, sometimes darkly humorous tale that combines police corruption, gangs and murder with friendship, loyalty and how ‘women of a certain age’ can beat the odds. Waterstones, St Andrews. 9 March, 6.30pm. Free. www.waterstones.comAye Write! celebrates the rich variety of Glaswegian writing, and brings the best of Scottish and international writers to the city.This year’s programme features a range of creative writing workshops including: Poetry Writing: Giveit a Go (10 Mar, 3-5pm, Mitchell Library); Revision and Editing (12 Mar, 3-5pm, Mitchell Library); Pointof View (16 Mar, 2.30-4.30pm, Mitchell Library); and Screenwriting for Beginners (16 Mar, 5-7pm, Mitchell Library). Venues across Glasgow. 9-19 March. www.ayewrite.comBelonging is a series of creative writing workshops led by poet Majorie Lotfi Gill, that incorporates photography and other artistic prompts to explore our universal experiences of journey and questions of belonging. Glasgow Women’s Library. 14 March, 10.30am-12.30pm. Free. www.womenslibrary.org.ukIn Her Shoes: Gender and Prejudice will explore current academic, creative and community work on the themes of women’s intersectional experience of hate crime. There will be discussions taking inspiration from historical and contemporary creative methods of black, lesbian and feminist artactivism as well as the launch of the film projects. No-one can harm me unpunished. I am a woman. Glasgow Women’s Library.29 March, 10.30am-1pm. Free. www.womenslibrary.org.ukOn Shame and Writing: Work in Progress with writer and editor Sophie Collins, is the opportunityto hear Glasgow Women’s Library’s artist-in-residence reading fromher work in progress ‘small white monkeys’, an elliptical narrative addressing the language of shame and post-traumatic writing. Glasgow Women’s Library. 6 April 5.30-7pm. Free. www.womenslibrary.org.ukColonsay Book Festival presentsa series of informal and friendly events with some of Scotland’s finest novelists and poets, including Sue Lawrence, Karen Campbell and Christine de Luca. Colonsay, Inner Hebrides. 29-30 April. www.colonsaybookfestival.org.ukPerformanceProfile of a spoken word artist, plus guidance on key skills to develop in your own readings/performancesJean ‘Binta’BreezeBreeze is reading from Third World Girl: Selected Poems (Bloodaxe 2011) at Radikal Words. Use this link to view: www.vimeo.com/69556828Jean ‘Binta’ Breeze is one ofthe UK’s prime exponents of dub poetry, a genre originating in the improvised declamationsof Jamaican dancehall DJs over instrumental reggae tracks. The widely differing styles of dub poets such as Linton Kwesi Johnson, Benjamin Zephaniah and Breeze herself indicate the genre is open to experimentation. Breeze also cites T S Eliot as an influence.Like many performance poets, Breeze reads her work – but notice how little she looks at the book. It’s used mainly for moral support, to check she’s not about to wander off track. Both hands are occupied: the left holding the book, the right underlining points. This is why venues should always provide a mic stand; if the mic’s in one hand and your book in the other, what happens when you need to turn the page? Breeze often asks for a lectern too, but never lets it become a barrier, more a literal means of support. The world-weary resignation of ‘Ordinary mawning’ is neatly conveyed by how she rests an elbow on the lectern.The poem hinges on long descriptions of the ‘mawning’ punctuated by the word itself, which is both a rhythmic device and a punchline. Notice the pauses before she delivers the word, and the corresponding laughter; the longer the pause, the funnier it seems. And notice the audience reaction when, instead of the punchline, they hear ‘trying to find a way out’. In the final pay-off she replaces ‘mawning’ with ‘bawl’, a word whose assonance suggests the thin line between laughing and crying.If one were to draw a graph of this performance, charting emotion, volume and sentence-length, it would be symmetrical, the peak occurring at the crowd-pleasing ‘wish me never did breed but Lawd / mi love dem’. From this point the poem gradually dropsits bravado and lapses into ‘clean up de mess / after dem lef’ loneliness. But Breeze has prepared us for this from the start: ‘it wasn’t dat de day did start out bad’ implies ‘but it ended up bad’.NICKY CRABB is Senior Associate at Apples and Snakes (applesandsnakes. org), whose Spoken Word Archive will be available to explore in 2017.mslexia Mar/Apr/May 2017 77INSIGHT


































































































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