It's finally launched!

It’s finally going to be out!!!   So forgive the outbreak of exclamation marks!   This weekend is the launch of my new collection from Templar Poetry at the Derwent Poetry Festival.    The books aren’t on the Templar bookshop website yet, but we’re assured that the web update is on its way and any books ordered online (£8.99) will be delivered asap, just  e-mail    Should also be on sometime next week.  I’m reading with several other Templar poets as well as my co-award winners, Martin Malone and Suzanne Ehrhardt at the Arkwright Suite, Masson Mills, Matlock Bath if anyone's in the Derby area over the weekend.  Mimi Kalvati is the guest poet reading on Saturday night and there are lots of others.  It sounds good fun and I’m really looking forward to it.  Won’t be able to blog from there, as the B&B I’m staying in doesn’t have wi-fi.   And no, I don’t have a smart phone, or a Blackberry.   But I’ll take lots of pictures and hope to do an update once I’m back home on Monday.

I write poetry very slowly - so much of the creative energy gets used up by writing prose in order to pay the bills.  It’s ten years since I last had a collection out - an exhibition of poetry and photographs (called Secret Eden)  to celebrate Visual Arts Year.  Before that it was a small pamphlet called ‘Unwritten Lives’.   So this collection has been a long time coming.  But whatever I write in order to make a living, poetry is where I start from, where I feel most comfortable, my natural voice,  and I can’t tell you what it feels like to have the poems out there to share with others. 

It may seem odd, but it means more to have one small poetry collection published than all the biographies put together.   This really is the blood on the page, rather than simply describing someone else’s blood on the page.  This is my chance to show that I can do what the people in my other books do.  Does this make sense?   I’d argue with anyone that biography is an art form, a found novel, a creative act, but deep in my bones, there’s a car sticker slogan or two lurking in the back window - ‘Biographers do it second hand’.  ‘If you can’t write, write about people who can’.

Not Saying Goodbye at Gate 21 is about journeys - departures and arrivals.  I seem to have been waving goodbye to people at airports and train stations all my life - I once counted up that I’d had 27 addresses in three different countries by the time I was 25.   The poems are also about different kinds of goodbye - the failure of relationships, the deaths of close relatives.   It contains a few of the most popular poems in the earlier pamphlets  (what the Pri-mate calls ‘Kathy’s greatest hits’!).   But there are a lot of new ones gathered together from little magazines that have published individual poems over the last few years, some that are too new to have been published anywhere, and a few more from E-zines such as the Tuesday Poem blog site.

I have a few review copies to give away - if anyone would like one please leave a comment or email me on


  1. Congrats, it's an amazing achievement! I will look out for the collection to pick up - love Templar collections.

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  3. Fantastic Kathy!
    You must be chuffed!
    I absolutely understand what you meen. I imagine the biographies are a real pleasure to complete but are also "a job". The poetry is your art form, an expression of you.

  4. Congratulations Kathy! Love forward very much to reading.

  5. How wonderful!!! Please accept these exclamation marks as my congratulations!!! Love the premise, the departures and arrivals. In fact, life itself is really just a series of hellos and goodbyes, isn't it? Hope to read it someday soon...

  6. Thanks everyone-- coming down to earth a bit now I'm home and work as normal. Still a little bit of razzamatazz is good for writers - balances all the critical comments you receive!

  7. Dear Kathy - This is the best news. You deserve it. And I feel I have seen many of the poems unfurl here on your blog via Tuesday Poem, which makes me feel very privileged and doubly excited.

    I am so envious of you too. I am inspired now to gather my poems together - I've been poised but uncertain for a couple of months now - best to just do it! Oh and such a lovely lovely book!!! I can't wait to see it. Bravo to you. Mary xx

  8. Thanks for your lovely comments Mary. Book is on its way.


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