It has been a busy time, another set of videos I’ve only just had time to edit and post:
We took part in the Archway With Words Festival back in September, reading from a variety of books at Archway Library. (5 books, 5 authors, for our 5th anniversary…)
Katy Darby, The Horror, the Horror, Stations
With the 5th Anniversary celebrations heading into view I was thinking about the thank you speech, and like the Oscars it is in danger of going on, and on. And on. So I thought I’d blog it instead, a section at a time. So I’ve been catching up with authors past and present in the course of the fifth anniversary planning to ask what they are up to now, (not that I don’t know in some cases) because after all, without them there would BE no Arachne Press.
Bartle Sawbridge Since Lovers Lies was published I have read from it in a packed room at Keats’ House, a literary festival in Faversham, and lots else in between. I self-published my first novel, A Piece of String two years ago, (look at the excellent reviews on Amazon, and buy it!) and I’m making good progress on its sequel, based not in inner London but in a fictional village in Middle England.
Bobbie Darbyshire Since Lovers’ Lies came out, Bobbie Darbyshire’s third novel, OZ, was published in 2014 and has received much praise on Amazon. She has completed a fourth, Thinner Than Water, and embarked on a fifth.
Cherry Potts Running Arachne gets in the way of much writing, but I’ve managed to squeeze a story into most of the anthologies, and publish a collection and a novel, and had several stories published elsewhere.
Mi L Holliday Since being published in Lovers’ Lies a poem of mine, A Mother’s Concern, was published in Shooter Literary Magazine, Issue #3: Surreal. Also, myself and my colleagues here in Japan are gearing up for a big seminar on English education to be held at the end of September 2017. This is the culmination of three years of efforts to integrate new teaching methods and technology into elementary and junior high foreign language classrooms, and we’re all very nervous and excited about presenting the results! Hope everyone will wish us luck!
Tania Hershman I’ve published four new books since 2013 – I’m co-author, with Courttia Newland, of Writing Short Stories: A Writers and Artists Companion (Bloomsbury, 2014), my first poetry pamphlet, Nothing Here Is Wild, Everything Is Open (Southword, 2016), won 2nd prize in the Fool For Poetry chapbook contest and was published in February 2016, and in 2017 my third short story collection, Some of Us Glow More Than Others (Unthank Books) and my debut poetry collection, Terms and Conditions (Nine Arches Press), were published. I founded ShortStops, a hub for all things short story in the UK and Ireland in November 2013, and I am now on the last leg of a PhD in creative writing inspired by particle physics, and am a Royal Literary Fund writing fellow at Manchester University. www.taniahershman.com
Tom Conoboy It’s been a busy couple of years writing-wise for me. I completed my PhD after five years and I was free to get back to my own writing. What a release that is! The joy of writing! I’ve completed one novel, the story of a young American girl who arrives in Scotland in 1985 in search of the key to her identity and I’ve just finished the first draft of my second novel, based on a real life murder in Perth in 1935.
As part of the run up to our celebration of our fifth anniversary we are highlighting our first five books, all available for £5 each from our shop
Also available to bona fide libraries and book charities free please contact us to enquire.
Number Three: Lovers’ Lies
Designed expressly for romantic cynics and cynical romantics. Liars’ League teamed up with Arachne Press for a second outing bringing the freshness, wit, imagination and passion of their authors to a wider audience.
Join us as we wallow in the many facets of relationships. Explore role-play gone wrong, goldfish that eat loneliness, and a very literal leap into the unknown. Old love, cold love, true love, new love, dead love, we’re through love – making babies and making whoopee, disappointment and contentment, playing at home, playing away or just playing; missed chances and new romances: everything from first conversation to last breath, strange journeys and stranger destinations.
Be careful who catches you reading it – your intentions might be misinterpreted.
… the anthology isn’t slavishly devoted to its theme; it has the freedom to take off on tangents and flights of fancy. Love is treated as a springboard rather than an anchor to hold the anthology in place.
The final, redemptive twist of Jason Jackson’s ‘A Time and Place Unknown’, the last, sci-fi, entry in Lovers’ Lies, leaves the anthology with a final note of optimism. It ends by letting us believe that love is a force for good and that it can overcome time, space and perhaps even death itself.
Over the course of its 138 pages Lovers’ Lies shows both the darker side of love and the way it brings out the best in us. If that was the intention of the Arachne Press editors, then they’ve done a fine job.
When we were looking for somewhere to launch this, we said we need the most romantic place in London… what about Keats House? Oh, they’ll never let us… but they did!
Speaking of designs, the cover (by Annie Rickard Straus) was the result of a massive competition with public and authors voting – they didn’t agree, so the authors won.
videos from readings
We will be reading from Lovers’ Lies at the PARTY on the 8th September. Come along! free (but ticketed)
We have a great fondness for LGBT history month at Arachne Press, and we are also exceptionally fond of libraries. As a result the combination definitely works!
Our last outing for February was to Richmond lending library, one of the oldest public libraries in London (lovely building, glass roof, unfortunately on the flight path for Heathrow…)
Here are some readings from that evening, mainly from Cherry Potts, but with assistance from Alix Adams on the first one. The sound isn’t wonderful (those planes…) but it’s better than what we managed on the video camera.
In order of appearance:
Arachne’s Daughters from Mosaic of Air (Cherry Potts)
Death & Other Rituals from Solstice Shorts: Sixteen Stories about Time (Tannith Perry)
A Place of Departures from Stations (Cherry Potts)
The Other Side of Sleep from the anthology of the same name (Kate Foley)
Tasting Flight from Lovers’ Lies (Catherine Sharpe)
Traditionally the sale happens in January. Well, we decided to have a February sale instead.
You can now purchase a copy of Lovers’ Lies, post free in the UK for £5 through our SHOP until Valentine’s Day, Saturday 14th February.
For the rest of February you can buy a set of Liars’ League titles, London Lies, Lovers’ Lies and (award Winning) Weird Lies for £26 (normally £29.97) again, post free in the UK.
And until they’ve gone, you can buy a Solstice Shorts T-shirt for £5 we have at least 2 in every size, but once they’ve gone, they’ve gone.
This Isn’t Heat by Richard Smyth, read by Silas Hawkins, in which the Buddha interferes in James Mercury’s life when the air conditioning breaks down.
Surf & Turf by Mi L Holliday, read by Sean Patterson, in which a goldfish comes to the aid of her lonely owner.
Just a quick link to John’s pictures on Facebook for last night’s triumphant celebration of our award, (Have I mentioned the award?) as part of BrockleyMax, at Misty Moon Gallery.
Thanks to the wonderful Carrie Cohen, Sarah Feathers, Sean Patterson, Lisa Rose, Tony Bell and Silas Hawkins, who did our Weird and Lovers’ stories proud. Thanks to Stuart & Jen for hosting. Video of the event up soon.The sharp-eyed will spot some pictures that aren’t people – that’s the trailer for Devilskein & Dearlove which we previewed last night, it went down very well!
I’m going to be spending the morning editing all references to the lovely Weird Lies on the website to AWARD WINNING Weird Lies, because, ladies, gentleman and aliens… WE WON!!
Our award, and the one won by our dear friends Liars’ League snuggle up for a proud photo.A Big thank you to Sabotage Reviews for their brilliant organisation and for their reviews, and for putting on the awards in the first place.
So what does it all mean, apart from the warm glow and the little star thingy and the aforementioned editing of the website?
It means that a lot of people like what we do – the award is by public vote (THANK YOU everyone who nominated and voted for us, you are lovely, lovely people).
It might mean it’s easier to get books into bookshops, and sold – you might think that creativity is its own reward, but we all need to eat.
It might mean we get more gigs for our readings – speaking of – TONIGHT you can hear lovely Liars’ League actors Tony Bell, Silas Hawkins, Carrie Cohen, Sean Patterson, Lisa Rose and Sarah Feathers reading from AWARD WINNING* Weird Lies, and it’s equally terrific stable fellow, Lovers’ Lies, at Misty Moon, where we will also be PREVIEWING the animated trailer (by upcoming animator Nick Page) for our next book, Devilskein & Dearlove. I will say nothing more, other than it’s ACE (Misty Moon aficionados, yes that is what I mean.)
(* wondering how long it will take to get bored with typing that)
It was an excellent event, which kept the energy going all afternoon and all evening, with live readings from all sorts of poets and authors, including London Lies author and Oxford local, Emily Cleaver.
A BIG thank you to everyone I forgot to thank last night, I hadn’t written a speech, so it was very off the cuff.
And a very big thank you to all the writers, in AWARD WINNING Weird Lies and all the other books, you are all brilliant.
And an especially big thank you to Alix, who turns out for almost every live event and does front-of-house so brilliantly. For someone who said she didn’t want to be involved, she does an epic amount, and it wouldn’t happen without her.
The third Arachne organised event for LGBT History month, (see Lewisham Library and North Kensington Library for video of the first two) and actor Sarah Feathers joined Cherry Potts at Walthamstow to read extracts from Mosaic of Air and Lovers’ Lies.
I’m afraid the recordings sound like they were made in the Ladies, owing to a resoundingly echoey room and a huge fish tank burbling away in the background.
Sarah reading from Tasting Flight by Catherine Sharpe
Cherry reading from Mosaic of Air
Sarah reading from Dara by Jessica Lott
Cherry & Sarah reading from Baby Pink/Electric Blue (from Mosaic of Air)