OK. So. Me.
I grew up in Solihull/Birmingham (Sheldon, if you must know) but moved first to Exmouth (Plymouth University’s old Rolle College campus – sadly now defunct) and then on to Bristol with my now-wife Natalie before finally settling in Portishead with our twins, Daisy and Jack.
I always enjoyed writing at school and university and used to scribble away daily without ever showing it to anyone. But then I stopped. Maybe life intervened.
But in 2013 I thought I’d try something – just a short story, which I shared with a few friends. They seemed to enjoy it. Then I began to write the odd poem, which I posted on ABC Tales, and some of the kind users there said nice things. I entered a competition to write some flash fiction for the 300th edition of Shortlist Magazine, and whadda-yer-know…they printed it!
On New Year’s Day in 2014 I was poking around on Twitter when I chanced upon a tweet by the poet Jo Bell, who was about to embark on a project called 52 – write a poem a week throughout the year, inspired by her prompts, and share them with other members.
What can I say? It changed a huge amount for me, and by the end of the year I’d had 15-20 poems accepted by a few print and online journals. What’s more, having read poems by other “52ers” I rediscovered my taste in poetry and decided to launch Clear Poetry, where the focus is on publishing new accessible work by both newcomers and established writers.
And then of course in the background there are the mixtapes. I’ve always loved music, and would often fill C90 cassettes for friends. I even pretended to be a DJ sometimes in the Student Union bar at university. The main thing is sharing the music I enjoy, which is where Random Flow Radio comes in. Expect soul, reggae, funk, guitars, synths…anything, really.
The aim of this blog overall is really just somewhere I can hopefully gather all of the online threads I’ve buggered about with over the years. Clear Poetry isn’t the place to publish my own stuff, or announce when it’s being published – it’s not a vehicle for me. So if you’re reading this – thanks – but it’s unexpected!