On 25th February I had a wonderful opportunity to discuss my poetry on a one-to-one basis with poet and tutor Judy Brown (organised by the Poetry Society) which turned out to be a relaxed but in-depth analysis of no less than six of my poems. I am very keen to develop my writing, as every poet should be, and this discussion was brilliant to look at strategies for taking my work forward. The session should have been one hour but in fact Judy gave me a good extra half hour of her time so there was plenty of time to talk about all the things I needed to know about writing, revising and submitting. The room at Derby Central Library was a bit chilly but I never really noticed, and I left the session on a real high. Judy was very good at setting up a rapport, and when you both come to the same idea at the same time that's a great feeling. I felt it was a very genuine critique and the discussion on fashions in poetry (as there are with everything in life) was enlightening. Of course I had to ask the question "so it's worth me carrying on then?" (needy little girl that I am) Happily the answer was very positive. Judy later emailed me some more links and poetry which she felt I should investigate, which I call going the extra mile.
During 2013 Judy was Poet-in-Residence at the Wordsworth Trust, at Dove Cottage in Grasmere. She is one of the Gladstone Library’s Writers in Residence for 2014, working there in June.
Her first book, Loudness (Seren, 2011) was shortlisted for the 2011 Forward/Felix Dennis and 2012 Fenton Aldeburgh prizes for best first collection.
Her first pamphlet, Pillars of Salt (Templar, 2006) was a winner in Templar Poetry’s pamphlet competition.
Work from the Wordsworth Trust residency appears in a pamphlet issued by the Trust, One of the Summer People (Wordsworth Trust, 2013).
Her poems have appeared in The Guardian, Poetry Review, Poetry Ireland Review, Poetry London, The Spectator and the New Statesman as well as in various anthologies such as Identity Parade (Bloodaxe, 2010), Salt’s Best British Poetry 2011 and the Forward books of poetry 2006 and 2012.
Judy won the Manchester Poetry Prize (2010), the Poetry London Competition (2009) and the Hamish Canham Poetry Prize (2005). She won first prize in Café Writers Open Poetry Competition 2013 and the Kent & Sussex Open Poetry Competition 2013.