Happy birthday Shakespeare and a consideration of knots

Is it actually Will’s birthday? No one knows, but there is a tradition that ties it to 23rd April because he was baptised on the 26th.

Anyway happy birthday Will.

As we recently published Math JonesThe Knotsman, which is set about a century after Shakespeare’s time and in Worcestershire, rather than Warwickshire, and is in any case, a not quite historie, as Shakespeare’s histories are not quite historie, I’ve been looking for links.

this is  not quite research – a lighthearted look at the knot in Shakespeare.

Was Shakespeare a knotsman, or did he know someone who was?

He uses knot to mean a group of people, often when that group is not entirely to be trusted, and ocassionally to mean a meeting of said group.

And to mean a contract, or bond, particularly of marriage.

He shall not knit a knot in his fortunes with the finger of my substance
Page, of a suitor in Merry Wives of Windsor

I’ll have this knot knit up tomorrow morning
Capulet, when Juliet submits to the marriage with Paris Romeo & Juliet

Cressid is mine, tied with the bonds of heaven… The bonds of heaven are slipped, dissolv’d, and loos’d; And with another knot, five-finger-tied,
Troilus and Cressida, when Troilus discovers Cressida is promised to another.

To hold you in perpetual amity, To make you brothers, and to knit your hearts
With an unslipping knot …
Agrippa proposing a marriage in Anthony & Cleopatra

Math Jones takes this imagery literally and has his characters tie, and untie, betrothal ropes, with terrible consequences. Lives and loves unravel, and the Knotsman must run for his life.

Math is in Worcester, the Knotsman’s stomping ground, tonight, reading alongside Claire Trévien and Charley Barnes at the Hive. see facebook event

Knot pictures from the recent Anni Albers exhibition at Tate Modern

Kate Foley – President of the Suffolk Poetry Society

Well, well!

Our Kate is the new President of the Suffolk Poetry Society

Kate Foley is a longtime resident of Suffolk, now splitting her time between there and Amsterdam.

Here are some pictures from the inauguration…

Kate’s first ‘outing’ as president will be on 11th May, when she will lead a workshop, and do a reading for the SPS Festival at John Peel Centre, Stowmarket, IP14 1ET.

She will also be reading at our Writing the Past event for Hither Green Festival at Manor House Library SE13 on May 18th (details to follow) and  the popular Fourth Friday event at The Poetry Cafe, Betterton St on May 24th.

We publish Kate in numerous anthologies plus her two collections, A Gift of Rivers and The Don’t Touch Garden (also available as an audio book)

Buy books by Kate

City Writes

On Thursday 13th December, you are invited to City Writes Autumn 2018, at The Northampton Suite, City University, Northampton Square, EC1V 0HB

Arachne Press’ Cherry Potts and Katerina Watson will be reading  their respective Solstice Shorts stories, The Midwinter Wife from Longest Night, and Threshold from Dusk. We will be supported by Ian Kennedy & Sarah Lloyd singing Cold Time from Longest Night, and there will be readings from the winners of this term’s writing contest, Meera Betab, Angelita Bradney, Kate Henderson and Debz Hobbs-Wyatt.

TICKETS £10 in advance only

 

Events in July in South London

 

Both our July venues are in New Cross, mid-distance between the stations – Amersham Arms is nearer New Cross, Out of the Brew is nearer New Cross Gate.

5th July Kate Foley is reading from A Gift of Rivers at regular feminist spoken word event,She Grrowls, upstairs at Amersham Arms, New Cross Road SE14 TICKETS here.

 

 

 

 

19th July at 7.30 we are launching Five by Five with four of the five authors (Joan Taylor-Rowan, Katy Darby, Cassandra Passarelli  and Helen Morris), at
Out of the Brew 306 New Cross Road, London SE14 6AF. FREE
in the garden if fine… there are rumours of themed cocktails.
books for sale, authors to sign them. Everyone welcome RSVP
Can’t wait? Word bookshop a few doors down from the cafe have stock in already owing to eagerness on their part and our distributors being super-efficient. Get down there and ask David for a copy.
(Reviewers copies available now – please ask)

 

Midwinter Wife Video at St Johns Downham

Cherry Potts reads an extract from her short story The Midwinter Wife (from Solstice Shorts Anthology ‘Shortest Day, Longest Night at St Johns Festival in Downham.

Launch Dates and readings coming up – You are invited

It’s been quite tricky to find affordable accessible venues for our launches recently which has led to some of them being delayed.

The good news is we have sorted out two of them, and are on the way to another.

In order of event date:

Not a launch but, Cathy Bryant is reading from her book Erratics  TONIGHT 28th May at Stirred Poetry at 3MT Manchester

Not a launch but, Kate Foley is reading from her book, A Gift of Rivers
at Sunday Night Lives, The Flying Pig, 106 Hills Road, Cambridge on Sunday 10th June doors 7pm event kicks off 7.30.

GHILLIAN POTTS WOLFTALKER

will be launched with a reading from the book by Math Jones
at
The Blackheath Bookshop
34 Tranquil Vale,
Blackheath,
London
SE3 0AX
6.30-8.30 15th June 2018
Just turn up – but it would help to know that you are coming.

DUSK, the latest Solstice Shorts Festival anthology

We are doing a pre-launch event at the St John’s Festival at
St John’s Church 353 Bromley Road SE6 2RP (opposite Homebase)
with readings by Cherry Potts, Laila Sumpton, Michelle Penn and hopefully Katerina Watson
on 20th June 12 noon

And then, the book is formally launched on 21st June 7pm
at Stephen Lawrence Gallery
10 Stockwell Street SE10 9BD

Finally (for June anyway)
CATHY BRYANT ERRATICS

will be launched with a reading by Cathy
at
Blackwell’s Manchester Metropolitan University
Nr Arthur Lewis Building,
The University of Manchester,
Bridgeford Street,
Manchester M13 9PL
6.30-8.30 28th June 2018
There will be free ticketing via eventbrite shortly, but get the date in your diary.

Happy #IDAHOBIT everyone, and happy publication day to Cathy Bryant

To celebrate IDAHOBIT (INTERNATIONAL DAY AGAINST HOMOPHOBIA, BIPHOBIA, INTERSEXISM & TRANSPHOBIA) here’s a poem from Cathy Bryant‘s collection, Erratics, published today!!

We are still working on avenue for the official launch, bt Cathy will be reading at Stirred Poetry at 3MT on Oldham Street in Manchester,  on Monday 28th May.

Congratulations Cathy!

Shit People Say to Bisexuals
Cathy Bryant

You’re just greedy, aren’t you?
So when do you think you’ll make up your mind?
Are you a tourist?
When you’re going out with a man, what’s the difference
between you and a straight?
You’re straight really, aren’t you?
When you’re going out with a woman, what’s the difference
between you and a lesbian? You’re gay really, aren’t you?
Do you just want to fuck everybody?
Would you like a threesome? If so, does it have to be with
one of each?
Which is better, sex with a man or with a woman?
I want you to come to more gay events, to make you more gay.
Why not just be straight? After all, you can choose.
Is it just desperation?
Do you just think that no man will want you, but you want
to keep your options open?
Ah, I’m sorry to hear that – you can never settle down or get married, can you?
Well, everyone’s bisexual, aren’t they?
You’re doubly damned because you could choose not to sin.
You are so lucky not to have to deal with any of the
prejudices and preconceptions that we do.
You have it easiest of anyone, don’t you?

copyright Cathy Bryant/ Arachne Press Limited

Science Fiction and Fantasy for The Hither Green Festival

May 18th at 7pm
Manor House Library
34 Old Road
SE13 5SY
as part of the Hither Green Festival

FREE

Meet Arachne Press authors Cherry Potts and Katy Darby for a chat about Science Fiction and Fantasy written by women, and their own writing.

The evening will include readings and an opportunity to buy books and ask questions (PLEASE ask questions!), and Katy and Cherry will talk about their favourite women SF/F writers and what got them started on writing speculative fiction. Cherry will also talk about her mother, Ghillian Potts’ young adult fantasy series The Naming of Brook Storyteller the final book of which, Wolftalker is published in early June. we  have pre-publication copies, and will bring other books for you to buy. There may even be some giveaways.

Upcoming readings

Friday 20th October (Tomorrow!) at 7pm Anna Fodorova is reading part of her story Fruit of the Sea from Liberty Tales at London Writers’ Eclective at the Sun Tavern on Long Acre in Covent Garden. (FREE)

 

 

 

On Thursday 26th October at 4pm The Old Woman from Friuli by Ghillian Potts is being read by Good Wolf People at Ashburton Library Shirley Road, Croydon, CR9 7AL

and Good Wolf People are also performing The Old Woman From Friuli at Stanley Halls on Saturday 28th at 1pm (£3)

Live lit events coming up

Being busy people we can’t always arrange our own events as regularly as we might like, so we are very happy when we get asked to take part in other people’s.

Next Friday 22nd September 7pm Liam Hogan is reading from Happy ending Not Guaranteed at the launch of London Writers’ Eclective at Waterstones 11 Islington Green, N1 2XH

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On Wednesday 27th September 18.15 we are at Archway with Words at Archway Library, Hamlyn House Highgate Hill N19 5PH where Liam is reading again, alongside Katy Darby, Cherry Potts, Carolyn Eden, and Wendy Gill

On Saturday 30th September we are at Free Verse Poetry Book Fair at Conway Hall where we will have a stall all day, and are reading in the Red Lion Square garden cafe at 4.30, with Jeremy Dixon, Lisa Kelly and Sarah James.Experience a flush of openness in San Francisco, a long day on a till, an even longer night in a hotel, and time shifting about the three occupants of a house.

In October we are off to the Shoreham Word Fest with a Liberty Tales/ Songs of Protest evening at the Yacht Club on Thursday 12th at 19.30 (£10) with Elinor Brooks, Greg Page and Carrie Cohen reading poetry and Cherry & Liam reading prose, and Ian Kennedy & Sarah Lloyd and some of Vocal Chords singing. We will be teaching two very simple protest songs!

Followed on the Saturday Morning at 11am with a Children’s event in the Library, (Free) with The Old Woman From Friuli by Ghillian Potts being read by Tash Fairbanks, and a kind of demonstration of woodcut printing from Cherry Potts, because we couldn’t get hold of Ed Boxall, the illustrator of the book, to join us. No sharp objects will be let near children!