Lockdown readings VG Lee reads an extract from Alpaca Moonlight

Reading from Story Sessions Anthology, Departures, VG Lee reads an extract from her story Alpaca Moonlight.

You can buy Departures and all other Arachne books  from our webshop, we will post them out to you.

Preorder No Spider Harmed… – out 8th August for our eighth anniversary!

If you would prefer eBooks, all our books are available from your usual retailer, now VAT free! We recommend Hive for ePub.

The Departure Board a film by David Steward

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We’ve come up with poem films before, and book trailers, but this is a first, a story film! What a multi-talented lot our writers are, working away to enliven their and your, lockdown lives.

David Steward, (Shortest Day, Longest Night, Departures) has created a film of his story for Departures, The Departures Board.

Thanks, David!

You can buy Departures and all other Arachne books from our webshop, we will post them out to you.

If you would prefer eBooks, all these books are available from your usual retailer.

Videos from Departures Launch 2

Meant to upload these ages ago, but preparing for Solstice Shorts got in the way!

Here is the second half of the launch of Departures, with readings from

Gloria Sanders reads poems that link beautifully to the theme

Helen Morris teases withthe first page of her extraordinary take on departures – The Change

Liam Hogan a ‘chance’ meeting in the departures lounge, set by fate…

and Barbara Renel with her flash piece inspired by a painting.

Thanks once again to Brockley Brewery for hosting, much appreciated!

Announcing LAUNCH of Departures

departed v2

clever cover by Kevin Threlfall

We are in the countdown to Departures lift off! We have the books (preorder a copy here). We have the venue. We have the invitations!

2019-10-08 15.20.27

We have readings from Carolyn Eden, David Mathews, Barbara Renel, Liam Hogan Joan Taylor-Rowan, Oscar Windsor-Smith and Gloria Sanders, and maybe more.

Join us to celebrate at Brockley Brewery, 31 Harcourt Road, Brockley, SE4 2AJ

Nearest station Brockley. Buses 171, 172 stop almost on the corner.

21st November 2019, 7 for 7.30. There will be cake, and beer. Everything free (apart from the beer.) Everyone welcome, please RSVP so that we know who is coming.

Animal Liberation – Vindication Preview

Another poem from Sarah Lawson which features in Vindication, 

the third of our #Womenvote100 books, which we are publishing NEXT WEEK

Launch info join us on Wednesday at the Poetry Cafe (RSVP) or pick a copy up tomorrow (Saturday)  at Free Verse or order a copy from our webshop

This version was recorded at The Story Sessions a while back.

#RefugeeWeek

It’s Refugee Week.

Many of our authors address the refugee experience in their writing, and have contributed to charity anthologies to raise money for refugge charities.

Here are a few videos of relevant material

Cherry Potts Queues at Asylum Tales for The Story Sessions (Published in Refugees Welcome which doesn’t seem to have a website anymore)

This England by Oscar Windsor Smith, read by Alix Adams at Asylum Tales  for The Story Sessions (also in Refugees Welcome)

They Said there were Pirates by Kirsty Fox read by Grace Cookey-Gam (In Dusk, out 21st June)

Four Beaches by Rob Schofield read by Mary Hooton and Marion Cox (In Dusk, out 21st June)

If you enjoyed these videos please consider a donation to Praxis, a refugee support project in London which is also being supported by Vocal Chords Choir at their concert tomorrow at Conway Hall.

Feedback from the tour

I’m just getting to grips with the report for the Arts Council who kindly assisted us with the costs of the last few books and associated book tour, plus Solstice Shorts Festival 2016: Shortest Day, and The Story Sessions, so I’ve been looking back through the feedback – 136 people went to the trouble of giving us written feedback, for which we are VERY grateful! We invited people to describe themselves in 3 words (some used more, but really it doesn’t matter) and tell us what they thought of the event.

Here’s what some of them had to say – these are just my out-and-out favourite comments, there were many more. Eclectic was the favourite adjective!

Foraging/ WITH PAPER FOR FEET launch 2 excellent poets, 2 different styles, and evening of magical words. Long live poems and their publishers! Fairly succinct really
Foraging/ WITH PAPER FOR FEET launch Narrative weave of Jennifer McGowan’s poems, succinct beauty in the smallness of Joy Howard’s Life-swept poet therapist
Foraging/ WITH PAPER FOR FEET launch I delighted in Jennifer’s spirited and evocative readings of her work. She brings new life to words. I’d never heard Chinese spoken while reading the phonetic version before. Middle-aged stressed editor
Foraging/ WITH PAPER FOR FEET launch Stories as poetry, poetry as stories, in a spiritual home of poets (Keats House Library) Necessarily evil author
Happy Ending NOT Guaranteed burley F The informality was initially relaxing, followed by a well-rehearsed & performed reading. Very personal and enjoyable way to spend the evening – like being in a living room full of engaging and inspirational minds Under-worked London writer
Happy Ending NOT Guaranteed burley F Beautifully dark and comedic frivolity Undervalued London actor
HAPPY ENDING NOT GUARANTEED Greenwich Very interesting evening writer/actor great and well-spoken you should continue your good work of bringing up and coming authors together and giving them a voice Maybe upcoming writer
HAPPY ENDING NOT GUARANTEED Greenwich Good variety of style in the stories, actor interpretation was excellent, dynamic energetic author reading Fascinated fiction fan
HAPPY ENDING NOT GUARANTEED Greenwich Makes me think when passing statues in the streets … what if …? Energetic, creative, idealistic
HAPPY ENDING NOT GUARANTEED launch Very well organised enjoyable program with diversified activities. I really appreciated all the marketing material New horizon explorer
Happy Ending NOT Guaranteed launch It’s events like these that make me think that maybe there IS a point to North London Hairy bee enthusiast
Happy Ending NOT Guaranteed launch Nothing’s sacred, great venue, great writer, great narrative Travelled, gypsy, overheated
Happy Ending NOT Guaranteed Lewisham Enjoyably hanging darkly in a cloud of suspense Overthinking underpaid scientist
Happy Ending NOT Guaranteed Lewisham Made me tingly, a bit like the Dr Who theme did when I was a kid. Hide behind my hands, but can’t wait for more Dreaming London lady
Happy Ending NOT Guaranteed Lewisham Not heard of Arachne Press before, but will look out for them from now on. A fascinating assortment of short stories brimming with otherworldliness and simmering spasms of evil blessed with reliving streaks of humour. Full of weird and wonderful reverberations as it should be. Bebop jazz poet
Happy Ending NOT Guaranteed Oxford Intimate, salon-like. As if I’d stumbled into an invitation only séance peopled by the spirits of Victorian huckster and exotic beasts earnest, quotidian, boring

 

Liberty Greenstead The ay the storytellers involved us, brought us into the atmosphere of their narration Quietly persistent
Liberty Greenstead A joyous evening to delight

the listeners on this Burns’ night

with ne’er a haggis no’ dram in sight

a joyous evening to enthrall all right.

pernickety political poet
Liberty Greenstead Exciting expedition into previously uncharted area of poetry and short story reading ‘poetry to the ears!’ retired bored housefrau
Liberty Housmans 1st time experiencing, so didn’t know what to expect, but enjoyed the live experience of an author reading their own work Lover of Ares
night write such a new and beautiful experience, who would have thought that writing in darkness revealed such gifts Restless London photographer
SHORTEST DAY, LONGEST NIGHT Bath Live, loud & varied, an eclectic mix of poems & prose that veered from tragic to whimsical. Bath writer in need of sleep
SHORTEST DAY, LONGEST NIGHT Bath Bookish whirlwind of tales & poems that provide thought-provoking insight into the writers minds Intensely formidable critic
SHORTEST DAY, LONGEST NIGHT Bath Entertaining varied & imaginative programme ranged from contemporary issues to timeless stories and poems vividly performed, Evoked a warm response from the audience M&M
SHORTEST DAY, LONGEST NIGHT Bath Completely gripping, never thought such a mix could be entertaining. The very high quality of the writing made it so Barmy Bath Bivalve
SHORTEST DAY, LONGEST NIGHT Bath An excellent evening with an inspiring mix of poems & Stories. Poignant, witty, intelligent work supported by the incomparable Cherry Potts who does such crucial work in supporting and developing opportunities for writers. A big shout out for Arachne Press!! Enthusiastic Bathite
SHORTEST DAY, LONGEST NIGHT Lewisham beautiful eclectic mixture of styles completely inspiring if slightly unsettling at times, in a good way Londoner by choice
SHORTEST DAY, LONGEST NIGHT Lewisham A thrilling eclectic mix of humour dark reality and myth Arbitrator/writer
Solstice Shorts Festival Excellent evening of song & Storytelling. Intriguing short stories that made you wonder laugh & Cry Definitely an experience to savour and repeat. Next Summer Maybe? Hopeful mother of twins
Solstice Shorts Festival Huge variety of work, great introduction to an international set of writers. Loved the music and actors great work. Wassailing was such a wonderful touch! Poetry loving librarian
Solstice Shorts Festival Wonderful variety of writing and composition suitably short to match the daylight today. Always a joy to hear new writing performed Broken armed poet
With Paper for Feet Lewisham Quality and humour of stories and poems, engaging performance, erudite, clever, lighthearted, accessible fun, quirky. Thank you! Frantically busy fan
With Paper for Feet Lewisham Witchy, feisty, a brilliant way to celebrate International Women’s Day Inspired every time!
WITH PAPER FOR FEET Oxford Compelling narratives from a poet who gives her work and her audience the respect and pleasure of a lively direct performance. Poetry reading regular
WITH PAPER FOR FEET Oxford Fine writing well-read and artistically presented Reader engineer listener
WITH PAPER FOR FEET Oxford The poet is not only a fantastic poet, but a first class performer of her work. Very worth going out on a rainy night P.S.
WITH PAPER FOR FEET Oxford Visual, curious, mythical, resonant Poetical psychologist
Story Sessions A place to hear good fiction and more, practice with other writers, It’s always good to perform your work to an audience I encourage you to go along and listen, or perform Ever learning writer
Story Sessions Relaxing entertaining and intense in the best way Fox loving optimist

The Story Sessions Fantastical Tales Video part 3

Final section of the videos from The Story Sessions on Wednesday, and the Liam Hogan Happy Ending NOT Guaranteed set which had a decidedly immortal theme to it:

Time the Devourer, read by Annalie Wilson

Internet Dating for Immortals, read by Liam

and

the final take on Bad Day, with a little music from Annalie to top and tail it.

These are the final posts, from the final Story Session of the season.

We’ve made the decision to retire the Story Sessions as a regular thing – and it will only stick its nose out into the light (and inevitable rain – have we EVER done a session when it didn’t rain?) as part of festivals and if asked for – it is regretably too much work for far too little return even when part-funded by those nice people at the Arts Council (Thank you ACE, really). There are other things to get busy with. So Festival organisers – if you ask us, we will put together more sessions, but if you don’t, this is your lot!

 

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Thanks to The Brockley Deli for hosting this season.

 

The Story Sessions Fantastical Tales Videos part 2

Math Jones show case today.

Math contributed a long narrative poem to our anthology The Other Side of Sleep, and has been an enthusiastic Story-sessioneer this season. His final contribution is a four-part skim of the 50 pieces that make his Knotsman Sequence.

The Story Sessions Fantastical Stories Videos part one

There is something about The Story Sessions, and Brockley, that makes it rain, and it came down stair rods last night. Actors and authors arrived dripping. But that didn’t stop us having some fun. I’m going to post the videos in three segments, starting with three videos from a disparate group of writers:

The Cretan Labyrinth Series Three by Becky Pinder read by Annalie Wilson (Annalie started before I got the video turned on, but the audio recorder was running so I’ve recovered the beginning, just be patient with the lack of picture!)

In Those Days They Used Lined Paper by Donald Hiscock

and

More Bread by Sally Connors read by Annalie Wilson

Tomorrow I will post Math Jones’ Knotsman sequence, and on Saturday, the final outing from Liam Hogan, Happy Ending NOT Guaranteed tour.