A nice round number for this exciting news! I will be starting up a new blog series on here as I just found out that I have successfully gained funding through Arts Council England’s Developing Your Creating Practice scheme, which funds established artists to explore a new direction of art.
I found out the news whilst in Cornwall last Wednesday, when aside from my usual content writing, I only had ten students across the whole month, so it’s certainly kept me busy on my return! I had pictured myself in parks with books and beer a lot more this month, but it’s also nice to be able to pay the rent!
My funding is for me to explore music with spoken word poetry, which will involve me learning the ukulele, learning some basic music programming software, and interviewing some poets who have also worked with music. I’ll write more next time in the new blog series, which will be focussed on that.
I’ve been doing a lot of planning and reworking ideas so far, alongside content writing and my Stanza group. August seems to be slipping away, and with lots going on, I better get on with everything else on today’s agenda.
This week has felt very busy and it still feels like I’m just trying to stay afloat. I’ve been suppressing a lot of emotions with the lead up to my grandad’s interment of ashes, along with the full moon. The walking challenge has been good, but it’s meant I’ve been walking past sunset and into the night. Head to my Instagram to find out more about the images below.
I love walking and listening to music, but I’ve been listening to a lot of Griefcast too. You can sponsor me here and leave a supportive message as I try to catch up, with one of my record days being 21,000 steps in attempt to make up for my week off sick. I read the word “Carmichael” and thought it was my name for a second. Cue violins.
A lot of people have been stressed about Grantium crashing, myself included, as I just needed to enter the details I’d prepared. There’s a lot of uncertainty about what things will look like over the summer and into the autumn, especially when waiting on funding and applications. It’s necessary to be flexible with any result.
Today or over this weekend I’m going to try to send some more books. Again, as I’ve had a week off sick, my income has gone down, so it would be the best time to buy books… though really the summer is a very uncertain time for a tutor as work tends to be term time! But as I have got a few copies of my latest book, and still some of ‘Circles’, now would be a great time and I can pop to the post office each week to send any more orders!
The main news this week is that I am in the process of recording audio for the Living Record Festival. I’ve done one recording already, but I’ll be experimenting with a binaural microphone to see if I can do something a bit different. I’m going to try to give myself three solid days off for spending time with my bubble, walking, reading, watching films and eating good food, then I’ll be back in the studio recording and at my laptop polishing the piece.
I saw fellow Burning Eye poet Maria Ferguson post about it and thought I would also apply. After many years after doing Scratch That Hackney, I’ve been working with producer Ellie Barr as part of the festival, which I believe is where I may have performed some of ‘Circles’ before. To find out more about the festival and the other artists involved, please sign up to this mailing list.
As part of this digital festival, I’ll be featuring an audio version of my book ‘Circles’, with a ticket option to include a copy of the the physical book. Whilst listening, I’ll also include a PDF of an activity with every ticket. The festival launches in January 2021, so make sure to sign up to the mailing list to keep updated.
The sun has got his (her?) hat on and I’m coming out to play! I had the past couple of weeks off work, and as much as I like my job… it’s pretty cool not to be working. I went to the Schwitters exhibition at Tate Britain – I’m going to review this for a submission, so more on that later. I graduated from my MA in Creative Entrepreneurship (with Distinction) and my poetry collection was even mentioned before making my way across the podium. I had a lovely meal at Tramshed afterwards and then went on to a meeting for She Grrrowls, my new Feminist group that I’m running with Emily Prichard. We’re going to be doing arts events alongside it. This is probably a good time to mention that we’re looking for female spoken word artists to perform in Kingston on 22nd July. Head to the contact page to express your interest! You need to be 26 or under as it is part of IYAF.
I have lots of exciting news (some of which I still can’t share at the moment). Firstly, I have been invited to hold a stall at the Saboteur Awards on 29th May. I shall be bringing lots of lovely books (I have over 30 copies – eeek!) as well as t-shirts, badges, stickers and audio CDs. I’m excited about attending the awards as I will get to see if Shake the Dust wins an award, woop woop!
Also, in case you haven’t heard, it’s NaPoWriMo aka National Poetry Writing Month. You’re meant to write 30 poems, so one poem per day. I’ve had a couple of catch-up days but I’d say I’d doing pretty well. I’ll probably post the best ones when I’m done. Anyway, I’m doing much better than when I tried to do a novel… though I have started reading a book about novel writing – one day! *shakes fist*
I’ve also been asked to be the resident poet for Bang Said the Gun, in May. I’m really excited as I’ve been wanted to go there more and this means that I will have to be there every night and I get to perform. I have a plus one each night, so I’m hoping some of my poetic, and perhaps non-poetic friends will come with me.
I’ve also got a plus one for tomorrow’s scratch performance of (part of) my piece ‘Circles’ that I created from the ‘Word’s a Stage’ project by Apples & Snakes, where I was mentored by Malika Booker. It takes place at Hackney’s Picturehouse Cinema, and is called ‘Scratch That Hackney!’