Hello and welcome to this month’s self-publishing poetry advice clinic and online open mic, May 2019. Our featured guest this month is Helen Eastman, director of LiveCanon.co.uk, who talks about the challenges of recording the poetry canon, offers sage wisdom on publishing poetry and introduces us to some contemporary Live Canon poets.
My monthly advice clinic and online open mic for poets is a warm and welcoming space for poets of all kinds, at every stage of development, and for everyone who loves the spoken and written word.
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Appearing on this month’s show are poets:
I did some little boxes and put some poems in and left them in around places like Regents Park to be found.
Dr. Helen Eastman
We felt like it was very exciting time to spoken word and performance poetry. And it was very difficult sometimes to compare poetry that was never performed with contemporary poetry that was so frequently performed. So we wanted to do for dead poets what they couldn’t do for themselves and put that work into performance context.
What I’m interested in as a writer is bizarre imagery that’s based off stuff I’ve dreamt about, for example, and surrealism and things like that [and] just the idea of play within poetry, wordplay, just enjoying words.
Show Notes & Resources
Listen to Recording the Poetry Canon with Orna Ross and Helen Eastman
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Recording the Poetry Canon: About the Host Orna Ross
Orna Ross is an author and poet and Director of the Alliance of Independent Authors, work that has seen her named as one of The Bookseller’s “100 top people in publishing”.
Recording the Poetry Canon: About Featured Guest Helen Eastman
Dr Helen Eastman is a freelance writer and director of theatre, opera (and occasionally circus). She trained at LAMDA after graduating with the Passmore Edwards Prize from Oxford University. She founded the ensemble Live Canon (www.livecanon.co.uk) and is currently its Director.
Orna: Hello there. Good evening and welcome to our Open Mic For Poets Online. I’m Orna Ross we do this monthly and it’s becoming a habit now. And this evening we have a fantastic lineup for you. So this session is all about publishing your poetry, getting poetry read, and exposing you to a larger crowd of possible readers for your work. It’s also about hearing how different poets go about spreading the word about what they do.
And I’m delighted that this evening we have Helen Eastman from Live Canon, a project here in the UK which I know you are going to find a super interesting in all sorts of ways. Helen originally started with the idea of having a canon of poetry, the great ones we all know and love and grew up with and learned in school and so on, on YouTube and as really high-quality videos performed by actors. And the company does all sorts of other things around poetry, including courses and competitions that you’re very likely to be interested in. And it’s also a small publishing house for poems as well. So we’re going to be interviewing Helen a little bit later on.
But, of course, as well we’ll be offering you the opportunity to ask questions about self publishing poetry, about how you put out pamphlets, how you put out books. It is also an opportunity just to hear some poets perform their work.
And I’m going to kick off with Tessa Florence Elizabeth Foley, who is going to come into the broadcast room now and tell us a little bit about herself and her poetry and then take five minutes or so to read two or three poems for us. Hi, Tessa.
Tessa: Hello, how are you?
Orna: Are you hearing me okay?
Tessa: I’m hearing you fine. Yeah.
Orna: Yeah. Okay. And can you speak a little bit louder, a tiny bit closer to your mic. Yes, absolutely. Perfect. Fantastic. So can you just tell us a tiny bit about yourself and your poetry? Where did it come? How long have you been writing?
Tessa: Well, I’ve been writing since I was a child really. Finally, my sister who is my editor and life coach really suggested that I do an MA in Creative Writing at the University of Portsmouth, which I did 10 years ago. And then finally I started submitting, I started having some belief in publication and I submitted to Live Canon five years ago and won the Live Canon International Poetry competition, which changed everything. So that’s where it really properly started, I think. I think that’s when I started taking it seriously.
Orna: It’s fantastic. I think every poet should have a sister who’s a life coach. Sounds like a very good plan. Fantastic. Alright, well, can we hear some of this prize winning poetry please?
Tessa: Yes. I’d like to read my, this is a poem I read an awful lot in public. My debut collection was published by Live Canon and it’s called “Her Big Days.”
Orna: Excellent stuff. I love it. Absolutely great. And thanks so much for that lovely, lovely reading. Can I ask you, how much attention do you give to the actual act of publication? And by that I don’t mean putting the books together because I know Live Canon does a beautiful job on that but what I’m talking about is the other aspect of publication, which is kind of promotion and getting your words out there, which of course, no matter how we’re published these days, whether we do it ourselves as the author or whether we have an investing publisher, we are charged with that kind of work as well. Does it come easy to you? Do you like it?
Tessa: No. Well, it doesn’t come easy, I don’t think. I’m enjoying finding new ways to do it. I’m trying to experiment with all sorts of different ways of doing it. I’m trying to make graphics with quotes and things and leave cards in various places. I mean, This is a strange thing, but I did a little, I did some little boxes and puts some poems in and left them in around places like Regents Park and things to be found. I haven’t had much of a response yet, but I am hopeful, but there are other things I think I’d like to do more. I think the public readings, I’m trying to do as many as the of them as I can because I think it’s the only way to do it really, to really promote.
Orna: Absolutely. That’s part of what this is all about. And of course online you can reach such a big audience and, and sit at home and you know, be wearing your pajamas on the bottom half and nobody knows.
Tessa: How did you know?
Orna: “Let me see,” she says, looking down. Great. Could you read one more poem for us and lovely. Thank you. What’s this one called?
Tessa: This one is actually, this is fairly new and it’s, in fact I changed the title today. And it’s called The Lilac at the Back Door.
Orna: Oh, you have to tell us a little bit about why you changed the title, what was that called?
Tessa: Well, it was called Lonely Tulip and then I thought this is about, growing up in, I grew up in a very strange little town called Flitwick in Bedfordshire and it’s about my house there and I thought actually if it’s going to be about that we didn’t have tulips and it was it something about the flowers and the house in general and the divorce of my parents basically.
Orna: Beautiful. And Tessa what is your writing name? Because you have a long name on Facebook. Is that your actual writing name?
Tessa: Yeah, that’s embarrassing because when Facebook first started, I sort of misunderstood the rules and put my entire name there and I haven’t changed it since. But yes, I’m just Tessa Foley.
Orna: I just wanted to check that because I want people to be able to find your work and I’m sure they would find it using your full at birth name, but I just wanted to check that. Okay. So here we have Tessa Foley with her new poem.
Tessa: The Lilac at the Back Door it’s called.
Orna: Wonderful. Thank you very much indeed. Tessa Foley, everyone. And if you would like to express your appreciation for Tessa’s poems, I know we have some people who are watching and are performing and do give us your comments, give us your feedback in the comments and if you have questions yourself about self publishing poetry, feel free to ask your question here and we may have time to answer it.
But now it is my great pleasure to bring on board our featured guest this evening: is Dr. Helen Eastman, who is responsible for Tessa winning that wonderful competition.
Recording the Poetry Canon: Featured Guest Helen Eastman
Competition is just one of the things that she does with Live Canon and she is going to tell us all about that very, very interesting project and the various work that she does. We’re going to talk all things poetry basically. So, hi Helen.
Eastman: Hi. I’m definitely wearing my pajama bottoms.
Orna: You’re in the club. Marvelous. Okay.
Eastman: Yeah, it’s this time and I apologize in advance if you can hear my children playing at any point. They have been told to keep downstairs and keep quiet. But you know, who knows how that might go.
Orna: That’s just ultimately charming and we’re fine. Lots of parents in the audience, I’m sure who know exactly what it’s like.
Eastman: I thought there might be.
Orna: Okay. So yeah, I have so many questions I want to ask you, but I want to start with the genesis. of Live Canon and how it came about and you know, and about you, you know, where, where did it start? How does it connect to who you are as a person?
Eastman: Well, Live Canon started 10 years ago. So we’re 10 this year.
Orna: Happy Birthday to you.
Eastman: Thank you. It’s been absolutely miraculous to have kept a small arts organization going for 10 years. And that’s still quite an achievement in itself. But 10 years ago I was working mainly as a director at the time. My writing journey was just starting, but I was mainly directing and for a long time a lot of the work I’d been doing had been moving further away from text and I was more and more being asked to direct circuses and physical theatre performances. And I got a group of actors in a room to reconnect with thinking about texts. And we started working on a performance of very loosely about Canon. And,we felt like it was very exciting time to spoken word and performance poetry. And it was very difficult sometimes to compare poetry that was never performed with contemporary poetry that was so frequently performed.
Eastman: So we wanted to do for dead poets what they couldn’t do for themselves and put that work into performance context. So we got an ensemble of actors together and I challenged them with learning essentially the back canon of English poetry, and a wonderful theatre came aboard, Greenwich Theatre who supported this unbelievably for 10 years and said, “Great. So do one show a month for six months, start with, you know, we sat down and we went through, okay, we’ll we’ll do Romantics, Lane Street greats, war poets. And each of those shows, three or four actors came on stage and they performed an hour of poetry and they called it all from memory. And I suddenly realized what an extraordinary privilege that was to be in the audience to be part of that. I suddenly realized quite how much I liked listening to words performed, performed well, with humanity and wit and passion.
Eastman: So that was the beginning of Live Canon, it was an ensemble. People started asking Live Canon to perform all over the place and to record some radio and to record installations in galleries and museums and to go to festivals. And it exploded, really. And around the same time we wanted to connect obviously to living and contemporary poets and not just be performing the back canons. So we started the Punch competition, which Tessa mentioned before me that she won, which was a competition for living poets. And because we started that and we wanted to publish the shortlist of poems, we had to start a publishing house. And because we were publishing that, a very wonderful poet called Dean Maxwell twisted my arm one day and convinced me we should start publishing debut collections. And because we were doing that, we then got convinced we should also be running an outreach program in schools, and so on and so forth.
Eastman: And so now we have, like, kind of publishing house, which works, publishing quite a broad spread of not just debut collections. We publish the ongoing work of the poets we represent and anthologies. We have the outreach arm, which works with young people and in schools and in libraries. We have the ensemble still who are still performing after 10 years and now have completely packed heads full of thousands of poems, and we have the work that we do online, which is we have a youtube channel of which has hundreds, literally of films of actors performing poems. And that’s used by a really wide demographic of people. I mean, it’s very popular if you’re struggling with your GCSE homework and you just need to feel really good performance of a poem for it to make sense. But it’s also really popular with those of us who are part of the brilliant and geeky and wonderful poetry community and want to spend time hearing stuff off the page and listening to poet’s work. So it’s been an amazing, amazing 10 year journey and with lots of brilliant people involved and who knows where the next, who knows what kind of we will be doing in 10 years’ time. I hope it’s as unexpected as this was.
Orna: I’m sure it will be because poetry is like that isn’t, it just takes you off as you say, you know, in an unexpected direction. So, yeah, I just wanted to say that I personally encourage everybody who sees this to just go straight over and immerse yourself. I think a poem a day is my kind of, you know, my medicine. Dr. Ross prescribes a poem a day for everybody. And what’s so interesting is when you see the poems performed well, I think it’s very inspiring for all us as poets in terms of performing our own work. And of course, how I know Helen is, I attended one of Live Canon’s poetry courses earlier on this year and around, I can’t remember the exact title of the course I did. And you probably can’t either. But anyway, it was so good. I’m now doing another one very shortly.
Eastman: So we started running, we run various different courses. One strand of them is about really thinking about how you perform your work and I think, it’s very fashionable in unique and wonderful British culture to try and pretend that you’ve put nurse into things and, and that results in often in poetry readings where people shamble up to the mic, looking as unprepared as possible and not wanting to look like the geeky kid who spent too much time thinking about it in case it looks precocious or arrogant. But actually if you’ve spent time writing something you deserve, it’s to be performed well and you would absolutely not spend a year writing a violin concerto and then go on stage and sight read it. You just wouldn’t do it. And so really thinking about how we prepare, how we select poem’s performance, how we prepare them, how we rehearse, the mechanics of voice, microphone technique.
Eastman: We run a series of courses that are there and we also run one on one help if people would like it, which is sometimes about preparing for a particular reading or an event or a launch. Sometimes it’s people who are really, really nervous and need help in a really supportive environment and just need space to practice because otherwise I think we’re kidding ourselves because poetry readings are not exciting and engaging if you don’t put thought and energy and effort into performing them anymore than going to the theater and watching a load of people sight read their way through Macbeth would be an exciting experience. And so I think now performing is seen as part of the job of a poet that we go to, you know, festivals we get always perform. And so we’re just trying to put a bit of focus there. The other courses we run, which are writing courses are generally correspondence and online courses because we particularly likes to run stuff for people who find it hard to get to regular workshops because they are geographically isolated, or because they’re carers or because they’re parents or whatever reason, getting somewhere weekly is so we try and create the kind of online community around the courses that we run. So we run writing courses every term that operate looks a bit like this but they’ve become very international, actually. We have courses w heave running at the moment, have people on them from the States, from New Zealand and Australia and France and Belgium and Holland. And it feels like a very exciting community. So yes, so we’ve been running courses as well and trying to do that from quite a way that is what people would like us to do and also to make sure we’re not duplicating what other people already doing brilliantly. There’s no point in us, you know, Poetry School runs brilliant courses, you know, we don’t need to be running the same thing. So we’re just trying to flitter in and fill some gaps around the edging for people. It’s been great.
Orna: Fantastic and the one to one coaching through the performance thing, which I think is so brilliant and so essential because we’re talking two different art forms here. I call it top of the head syndrome. You know when you go to a reading and the poet has their head down and you know, you see their scalp line for the entire evening and it’s, as you say, it’s not fun and they are two completely different art forms. Do you do those one to one sessions online or does it have to be a physical thing?
Eastman: We haven’t but there’s no reason at all why we couldn’t. So it just needs somebody to say, “Actually, could you do that online for me?” And we’d say yes. It’s just something, we generally say yes, but they have been in person but they don’t need to be I don’t think.
Orna: I don’t think either and I think it would be wonderful because you know, the other thing that you said there that I’d love to pick up on is the global nature of this stuff now and you know, poetry, if you’re trying to just sell the poetry to your own territory and you live in the UK, are you living in smaller country? I come from Ireland, you know, there is absolutely no way you can make any sort of impact for yourself as an author/publisher income wise with, you know, with the size of because poetry is a minority sport, but it is a minority sports with very dedicated fans and followers and there are enough of the people who liked the kind of thing that you personally do as a poet. Because again, we all do very different things. It’s so personal. There are enough people globally to actually give you some support. I was really surprised by what happened to me when I self published. My first published book was a pamphlet of poetry and it was bought by people who didn’t know me and that just knocked me down.
Orna: Yes, please.
Eastman: It’s really important that we’re not just talking to ourselves. You know, we really have to have to make sure that we are thinking about writing for and speaking to and communicating with a much wider audience. One of the reasons I find Youtube very exciting is because I think it can take people on really interesting journey from what they know or think they might like to different places. And maybe it’s cause, you know, there are too many young people in my house spending too much time on youtube and I watch on as a mother as they click on and click on, but I think it gives a really good opportunity as a poet for people to stumble upon your work and watch more of it, but also make connections between your work and other people’s work.
Eastman: Because every, if you don’t know this, for every poem that somebody watches or for every film, Youtube will then suggest other things they might like to watch. And most people do then move on to watching something else. So I set, for example, my 12-year-old up the other day to watch a Michael Rosen poem that he’d been learning at school and by the time I came back 20 minutes later it had sent him on a journey from Michael Rosen to Benjamin Zephaniah and he’d actually covered an extraordinary amount of theatrical ground. And I think that’s why it can be quite interesting form or platform for poets, which at first sometimes we can very hesitant about technology and it can feel slightly adversarial to such a precise form of poetry but actually it’s an amazing opportunity to find audiences and make connections with other poets, I think.
Orna: I couldn’t agree more. Okay. We’ll take a break in a moment for some more poetry from another poet. But tell me before we do that about you, your writing journey as you called it earlier. Tell us, talk about Helen, the writer who doesn’t get enough of an outing I say.
Eastman: Thank you. That’s very lovely. I mean, I do work and live as a writer and I mainly write for theatre and for live performance. I also write quite a lot of lyrics and music and I write a libretto opera, which for me are the mid points between poetry and theatre in many ways. I’ve been really lucky that that is now what I do and, and how I pay my mortgage and I know that’s an extraordinary privilege mainly through being very diverse so I write almost everything from opera to stage adaptations of CBBS. For those of you with small people in bed, I wrote the stage adaptations of In The Night Garden and the sort of CBB Classics at the moment. So by writing widely, having a great love of breadth of form and styles and genre I’ve been very lucky over the last 10 years to be able to build a career.
Orna: Fabulous. Will you hang around and come back and talk to us in a little while? I would love to get some of your advice for poets but I think we will have Richy come in on do a reading performance for us first. Yeah. Thank you. So, hi. Hi Richy. Tell us a little bit about yourself before you get started and what kinds of poet are you, how did it all begin for you?
Richy: Absolutely. Yeah. So I suppose I’ve always written, since I was a child, I’ve always been, I don’t know interested by things, all things imaginative, should I say. But I’d say what I’m interested in as a writer, are three things mainly and that sort of a bizarre imagery that’s based off stuff I’ve dreamt about for example, and surrealism and things like that. But also, taking, sort of, what’s the word, photographs in writing of things I’ve experienced, whether it’s a train journey, whether it’s something I’ve seen on the street, just sort of, you know, capturing moments as such. And the third thing that I’m interested in really is just the idea of play within poetry, wordplay, just enjoying words, and metaphor and things like that. So, yeah.
Orna: Wonderful. Alright, then. Let’s hear some of it. What are you going to read for us first?
Richy: Absolutely. Well, I’m going to read some stuff from my first collection, which is coming out, via Live Canon. This one is called View from the Door Gap. It’s based on a painting, by a surrealist painter called, I forgot the name, but-
Orna: It doesn’t matter. He inspired you.
Richy: Yeah, absolutely. I’ll read it out. Is my voice okay, volume wise by the way?
Orna: Yes, you’re settling in and it seems to be improving. Yeah.
Richy: Excellent. Okay.
Orna: Wonderful. Thank you very much indeed. So your debut collection is about to be published and when does that happen?
Richy: We haven’t decided on a specific date yet. I think is probably going to be the end of the year, if not start of next year.
Richy: It’s currently in the sort of editorial process with Helen for artwork and things like that, but, it’s, yeah, it’s on the way, shall we say.
Orna: Fantastic. And where can people find you online?
Richy: Well, I’ve got a website which is Richycampbell.com richycampbell.com, and I’m on Twitter. So it’s Richyacampbell and I’m on Facebook as well. So yeah, just type in my name, Richy Campbell, the picture of me is quite idiosyncratic because I’ve got a big Ziggy Stardust-like lightning bolt across my face. So, from a night I went to the other day. So yeah.
Orna: Can’t miss you.
Richy: Yeah. It’s quite, yeah. So, yeah, there I am, come and say hello, everybody. I’d be delighted.
Orna: Fantastic. That’s great. Can you do one more poem for us then?
Richy: I’d be delighted. So, this poem was actually the first poem I ever had published and it was fittingly Live Canon who published it. It was nearly 10 years ago now.
Orna: You must have been two and a half, Richy, have you really been publishing for 10 years? Wow.
Richy: I have. Yeah. Yeah.
Richy: Yeah, I’ve been told I look younger than I am.
Orna: Yes. They were not lying.
Richy: Yeah. So, this poem is called Superstar and yeah, it was amazing to have my first poem published. It gave me a lot of confidence and it’s a pleasure to be published by, I now have my first book come out through Live Canon. That’s wonderful, really. So I’m going to read it. Superstar.
Orna: Strong imagery, indeed. Wonderful stuff. Thank you very much, Richy.
Richy: Thank you very much, thank you.
Orna: Richy Campbell, everyone. Okay. So we will now return to Helen I think who is going to give everybody some tips about publishing poetry and about performing poetry because she’s got just so much experience on both of these. Hi Helen, are you okay?
Eastman: Hi. Yes.
Orna: Still with us?
Eastman: That reading, that was brilliant.
Orna: Beautiful. Yeah, and Tessa earlier too, amazing absolutely fantastic. Yeah, so this session is called Self Publishing Poetry, but of course there’s very little difference isn’t there between, you know, me publishing my own poems and you publishing the poems of somebody else. It’s these days, a lot of it is very similar in terms of actually getting the work out there being the biggest challenge for everybody and the poets being quite involved in that. So I thought it would be great if you could talk to people a little bit about how you get attention for your poets. And obviously we’ve kind of covered that a little bit, but you know, advice generally, our people are hungry for advice.
Eastman: I mean, I think, as I say, it’s really tough and you have to work really, really hard. If you think about the narrowness of the selection of poetry books in your local Waterstone, for example, and you think about all the thousands of thousands of poetry books that are written every year that aren’t there, you have to think how hard it is to get your books to readers. And so I think whether you are published by a publisher or whether you self publish, you still have to work really hard to introduce your work to people and to find readers. Reading often and getting out there at readings, at events, open mics is really essential. And being bold about sending your work to festivals and trying to get yourself invited to read there is really important. I would say that more books are sold after live readings or after live events or festivals than anywhere else for many, many writers.
Eastman: Being part of writers groups, being part of a community, turning out to support other people when they launch their books when they are reading is really important. So they are not always just trying to sell books that you are actually also buying other people’s. The mantra of read, read, read is really true. Be part of the readership as well, buy other people’s books, support other people’s books I think is really important. I think it’s incredibly difficult these days to promote yourself as a poet if you don’t have some kind of online presence. Because I think if people read something by you that they like and they then want to find you and whether that is on social, Facebook or Instagram or you have a webpage, I think if you have no where for people to research you and find out about your work by sticking your name into Google, it really doesn’t help.
Eastman: So that’s another great way to just, I make sure that that information is up to date and interesting and that you are, and again that if you’re tweeting or you’re posting Instagram posts that you’re not just posting about yourself, but you are reading other people’s work stuff you’re reading. But that community is really sort of democratized marketing books in some ways because you can reach audiences by being witty and engaging and open and chatting to people online. It’s actually an incredible opportunity to build audiences. I think the other thing is to be unafraid to give your book to people. I think it’s really that you’re nervous when you’ve printed a certain number of copies of a book. It can feel very, very precious. But actually sometimes it’s really important to when you meet people to gift them a copy and say “If you like it, can you maybe review it for me online or mention it to other people or tell other people” and to be unafraid about doing that.
Eastman: Whenever I speak at live kind of launches, I always say really candidly to all the wonderful people who are there drinking wine and celebrating a book “It is really important that you now go out and tell people about this book and it’s really important that you buy poetry and it’s really important that when it comes down to Christmas, you buy poetry for everybody and that you buy books for everybody’s birthdays and if you love this book that you gift it for lots of people and that’s how books spread and how people start to get excited, you know, about them. Word of mouth is really important.
Orna: Oh, for poetry it’s absolutely key. If I could pick up on a couple of things that you said ebooks of course, make the giving of your book much cheaper and people don’t value an ebook in the same way as they value a print book, I think it’s fair to say, but it can be a great way for you to inexpensively distribute your words to lots and lots of people. And if you are going to all this effort to bring people to your work, I think it is ideal for you to bring them to your own also website where they can actually purchase on your site rather than bringing them, say, to Amazon where they purchase there or publisher’s site is also a possibility. You should bring them directly, you know, to where their money will have most impact. That’s what they want to do so make it easy for them. I see too many poets either don’t have a website at all or if they do have a website, it’s just kind of like a brochure site and they don’t have a blog, they don’t have anything that kind of makes it worthwhile to revisit and they don’t have a transactional page. So do set yourself up so that you can actually, if somebody comes to your website, they can actually give you the money instead of giving it to Amazon.
Eastman: And making that easy. It is also really important to remember that that being out there and being a poet isn’t all about books as well, that actually there are lots of opportunities to be a writer and to be paid for writing poems. So residencies, writers in education, poets in schools are all ways that you can be a poet and write and share your work and so there are lots of great opportunities, one of our poets has been residenced in Greenwich train station this year and has written the most incredible poems which are on massive billboards where the advertising would normally be which is an incredible opportunity to reach a lot of commuters in the morning with their poems. And so looking out for opportunities which allow you to reach audiences in other ways, I think is really exciting. Good place to start with that is to just make sure you’re on the great arts council website of opportunities called www.artsjobs.org.uk band they’ve got a youth section and if people are looking for poets to work in schools, to read in schools, to run projects with young people, to run projects in libraries, to run community projects, that’s where that kind of gets advertised.
Eastman: But being a poet in your community that aren’t just about books-
Orna: Exactly. And then they, after that event then is where people will be interested in book because you kind of got to lead them in slowly. You know, buying a book, though it isn’t a huge financial commitment, does feel like a big commitment to a poet. So, yeah, gently lead them in. Could you just give that website address again and we will include it in the show notes and we will also include in the show notes similar organizations in other territories around the world.
Eastman: Well, yeah, that one I mentioned is artsjobs.co.uk, I think it’s .co.uk, but I’m not sure.
Orna: That’s okay. We can check it.
Eastman: And it’s a great information site for the arts in terms of opportunities arising.
Orna: Fantastic. Helen, it’s been absolutely brilliant to speak to you. We’re going to hear from Rosemary Carr now in a moment who’s going to read for us. Just before you leave anything else? Any other parting words of wisdom for our poets?
Eastman: Just forums like this are brilliant. Always say yes, you never know where it might lead you. You never know who you might meet, where the next opportunity might be and so getting involved is really, really important in terms of building relationships.
Orna: Fantastic. Thank you so much for taking time out of your super, super busy schedule to come on to talk to us about Live Canon and all the fabulous work you’re doing, looking forward to the next 10 years.
Eastman: Us really thank you.
Orna: Thank you. So now we are going to hear from Rosemarie Carr. Hi Rosemarie, are you still with us? You’ve been very patient. Are we having a slight technical issue with Rosemarie? Okay, let’s, I see Richy still there. Are you up for reading another poem Richy as? Yup. Okay. Let’s, let’s, let’s hear Richy do another one and we’ll see if we can get Rosemary before we finish up.
Orna: Right. Great. Okay, let’s go again.
Richy: Excellent. Can you hear me okay again?
Orna: I’m hearing you okay again. Keep the voice nice and loud.
Richy: Absolutely. Okay. Just before I start one thing I would like to do is learn my poems off by heart, more being quite lax with that, but as we were saying earlier the top of the head thing’s not, it’s not ideal is it really because one wants to give a performance as such but it’s absolutely something I’m going do. I’ve only got back into performance really. So, it’s on my mind, shall we say? So I’m, I’m going to read a poem called, Shrouds.
Orna: Thank you so much, Richy. Thanks for doing an extra poem for us and for being so fantastic. Look forward to your debut collection. What’s it going to called?
Richy: The working title is A Fine Rain which is after one of the poems in the collection.
Orna: Beautiful. A Fine Rain. Richy Campbell, everyone and you can find him online at Richycampbell.com. Thank you again. We’ll try and get Rosemarie and she tells me in the chatroom that she is here, Rosemarie, we were just seeing a black square. I have no idea why, but hopefully let us try again. And if we don’t get you this time, we will definitely get you next time. Richy, could you tell me in the chat room, are you just seeing a black square? Could you, could you text me on the chat room cause I can’t hear you from the lobby if you speak. Can you see the text there or anybody on Facebook Live there? Can you tell me, can you see rose Marie? Is it just me who doesn’t see her? I can see her name but I’m just seeing a blank square. So no, Richy can’t see her either.
Orna: Rosemary, I’m afraid this time we will, we won’t be able to hear you, but we run this event every month and we would absolutely love if you would come back to see us next month. So, you might let me know that in the team chat. So thank you everybody for attending our poetry, open mic, Self Publishing Poetry. If you have any questions about your own work, anything about, you know, some of the issues that Helen raised there in her interview or anything that’s going on for you, particularly at the moment, please, yes, do put them in the Facebook comments and we will get to them another time and do come along next month with your own poems and with your own story and we’d love to hear them. We’d love to bring your poems to readers worldwide. Rosemarie Carr is coming back to say “Brilliant.”
Orna: She will come next month and read for us. I’m really sorry Rosemarie about the tech. That is just something that lets us down sometimes possibly if you kind of rebooted, we will be able to get you in. But we’re running out of time and can’t do that this time, I’m afraid. So thank you so much everybody for being with us. It was wonderful as always, cannot get too much poetry, me and I’m sure you as well. And don’t forget, I read a poem every day, spread the word about all the poets. Get your work out there as much as you possibly can. Give it away for free as Helen was saying, build your audience, build your website and be available to sell your poetry books when people want to buy them. So we will see you next month. We’re back, same time every month at 8:00 PM on the third Tuesday of the month. And or is it the, sorry. Second Tuesday of the month. Yeah, it’s very late this month. Second Tuesday of the month, 8:00 PM London time and whatever time you are there and in replay, which is when lots of people catch up with this on the Facebook page. So thank you for being with us and happy reading, happy writing and see you next time.