So many competition questions answered (and congratulations to all who made the podium.)
Books available direct from the poets all signed and dedicated – something I’m really proud of, although I have had to give-up on the ‘Get it from a Poet’ campaign slogan as apparently nobody wants to wear that T-shirt.
All of which makes me think that we have come a long way in the last couple of years, and indeed the 18 months since we managed to release our first wee book, The Road To Clevedon Pier.
So it seemed a good time to share that special book with you all today.
You can download your copy, by simply clicking on the download link below:
I can’t quite believe that it is a year since we launched Raine Geoghegan’s (and our!) first collection, ‘Apple Water : Povel Panni’ which continues to garner rave reviews.
‘Apple Water’ felt like something special right from the beginning and Raine’s mix of Romani dialect and family tales has left listeners spellbound across the country wherever she has performed it.
Needless to say, when we talked to the lady about a new collection that sits alongside it, there was never a question that we would like to publish it and I am more than proud that we will be doing just that later this year.
‘lenti hatch o yog’ which translates as ‘they lit fires’ is a beautiful collection of monologues, haibun and songs.
Of course it isn’t just the words that have beauty, the cover – front and back – are based on artwork created by artist Christine Ford, a Romany artist from Pukerua Bay in New Zealand.
Like ‘Apple Water,’ ‘they lit fires’ also features a couple of Raine’s family photos which add to the atmosphere of the collection perfectly.
The collection won’t officially be available until later this year, but I am happy to be able to tell you that Raine has a number of the first print run of the first edition that she has today made available for sale from her web site and would no doubt love to sign and dedicate for you.
These are now available to order direct from Raine at her web site HERE.
I keep saying that we are big believers in people buying their poetry direct from the poet as it is the best way to support their on-going work and I really hope that you agree.
Well, a little later than intended, but I am pleased and proud and many types of chuffed to be able to announce the winner and shortlisted poets of our ‘Bestiary of the Night’ competition.
As you may remember, our winner will get a cash prize and see their poem reproduced on one of our beautiful Artcards.
Additionally, they will join the rest of the shortlisted poets in our own wee Bestiary to be published in 2020.
So with no more natter, our shortlisted poets are:
Anna Teresa Slater
Ceinwen E. Cariad Haydon
And I am hyperventilating to be able to announce that our
is the quite legendary
for his poem
Many congratulations to all of the shortlisted poets, especially to Des who incidentally (and I am very pleased to be able to say that the competition was judged anonymously when I do) was the very first member of our Cult of the Spiny Hog.
Well, what a busy day, but I am pleased to be able to announce the Three winners of our White Label – Trois First Collection Competition, that will see Hedgehog publish three pamphlets during 2020.
I know every-judge-ever says the same thing, and it isn’t always true, I’m sure, but this proved to be the most difficult choice I’ve had to make to date as there was a stunning selection of diverse poetry styles and subjects which is just how I like it.
In the end each of the three poets I’ve chosen brought something a little different that I couldn’t ignore and I guess that is what it is all about.
Saying that, there are a few others that came close that I may well be speaking to regardless of the competition.
But enough blather, and I’m proud to announce our winners as:
Brendon Booth-Jones – Vertigo to Go
Damien B. Donnelly – In the Garden of the Many Meadows of my Mind
Lucy Crispin – shades of blue
Congratulations to the winners and as ever, many thank to everybody that took part in the competition.
It may well be a busy competition day today, but I couldn’t let the moment pass without marking the fact that it is indeed the day that Nigel Kent’s ‘Saudade’ and Melissa Fu’s ‘Falling Outside Eden’ are officially published today.
As ever we are more than keen to get you to support our poets by buying copies directly from them, so we are making a quite superb offer.
If you buy a signed copy of one of the titles today or tomorrow – 14th/15th of October 2019 of either:
a. ‘Falling Outside Eden’ direct from Melissa HERE, or
I was going to make a wee list of what we are publishing next year, but I thought that I’d lay it out along with where I am coming from with it all instead – so don’t feel bad if it is far too boring to read, I just wanted to leave it for anybody with a passing interest over the coming months to trip over.
But where to start?
I have to admit that 2019 hasn’t exactly gone to plan and that despite all appearances, there really was one, which only makes it the more annoying.
I won’t bore you with the details, but I’m pleased to be able to say that all is getting back on track and with a ‘Herculean’ final push we should end the year with quite the ‘wow’ of a list of publications and some brilliant poets blinking in the daylight.
Not quite as many or when they were intended, but there we are.
It is poetry, not the end of the world.
So it wasn’t the best of years, but we will still (hopefully) have published:
21 single-poet-collections, (6 books and 15 chapbooks),
3 of our poetry Conversations and
Not too shabby for a two year old press, if not quite chic.
Looking forward to next year (and yes, I am getting ahead of myself here,) I think we can improve on that a fair bit and alongside the poetry, for the first time we are going to have a wee dabble with a touch of prose and so 2020 looks something like this:
Poetry Collections – Books:
The plan at the moment is that we will publish Four Single Poet Collections in book form during 2020, although I have hopes that like this year we will be able to add at least a couple more to the tally.
Ideally, I’d like to double the number, but we cut our cloth.
Poetry Collections – Chapbooks:
My idea for our poetry pamphlets is that we will be aiming to publish two each calendar month, so (err, not enough fingers and toes…) twenty-four in total.
Again, I would like to improve on that, but we will see how it goes.
I won’t list them all, but as we stand 14 of those ‘places’ are accounted for and I want to carry on with these being an even split between first collections and those of the more experienced poet chap(ess.)
I’m a big fan of collaborations and shared pamphlets, so I want us to carry on with the Tree Poets and Conversation series. Two of each seems about right in 2020.
Who doesn’t love a good anthology? We have a couple outstanding, so I see these dropping on an ad-hoc basis as the year progresses. Probably four over the year.
The Sticklebacks were the biggest casualty this year and I really want us to ‘re-launch’ them next year in January.
More on that soon, but in simple terms I’d like to get to the point where we are publishing 2 of the wee blighters each month – so 24 in total in 2020.
All of which is nothing new, more a case of getting back on track, but one thing I do want us to do in 2020 is dabble a wee bit in prose.
I’m sure we can handle it and that it isn’t the ritual de lo habitual. *sniff*
More details on this in the coming weeks but I see this splitting into:
Novellas: I’d like us to publish one or two novellas each year going forward as they are a great form and in terms of literary fiction or a more poetic prose, I think they have their place, and
Guppies: Running alongside the Sticklebacks, I thought it would be good to introduce our Guppies.
These will be single short stories, beautifully published in pamphlet/PDF download formats.
Again more details to follow.
And that is about it and congratulations if you got to the end.
I realise it is a wee bit of a navel gaze, but it never hurts to set your stall out and like most things in life, telling people means that you can’t just forget about it all and get lazy instead…
Of course the big thing I haven’t mentioned is our Cult. Everything that happens at Hedgehog is because of our brilliant Cult members who pay their membership fees and give us a basis to work from.
I’m really proud that we don’t have any funding from anybody else as it means that there is a freedom to publish as many people as we can and I hope have poets that earn a lot more from their writing than most.
I love the fact that the Cult members get to enter all of the competitions for ‘Free’ and that they will receive every single book and chapbook we publish, it is the coolest thing. It feels like a proper community now, it is the bestest of it all.
The Cult will continue to be limited to 100 members during 2020 as after all it is quite the deal
It has been a bit of a mad old week around here, lots of plotting and planning, and even a few announcements for collections that will come out in 2020.
And I am really rather chuffed to say that this week’s Free Stickleback for you to lovingly download, is Lady Gaynor Kane’s brilliant nod toward some very brave ladies.
We are of course publishing Gaynor’s debut collection, Memory Forest (not Frost as the odd Muppet has called it) in the near future, so this gives a wee taste of the quality of her writing before you get a chance to delve deeper.
But you probably knew that.
What you won’t have known is that I am really rather ecstatic to be able to announce that we will also be publishing Gaynor’s debut paperback, full collection in 2020.
So that is a Stickleback, a pamphlet and a book – the holiest of trinities and henceforth to be known as Kane’s Hat-trick
(ahem, long week, sorry.)
But getting back to the Stickleback, you can download your copy, by simply clicking on the download link below:
I’m really proud to say that following on from her rather wonderful Stickleback last year, the 14th of October sees us publishing Melissa Fu’s collection ‘Falling Outside Eden’ which is already gathering more than its fair share of admiring glances.
As ever, to celebrate the launch we have produced a rather lovely ‘Deluxe’ edition, with coloured end-papers and everything else and I’m happy to say that you may now pre-order a copy direct from Melissa herself, who I’m sure will be more than happy to sign and dedicate it to taste.
Unless you are a member of our ‘Cult’, this is the only way you can get a copy of the Deluxe edition and certainly Melissa is the only one who can sign it for you!
As you no doubt know, we’re big believers in people supporting poets and the best way to do this is to buy their work direct from the ‘the source’ and here is the perfect opportunity.
To buy your signed copy of the First Run of the First Edition direct from Melissa, go HERE
To find out more about it, you can now see Melissa’s author page on our web site THERE
If you have a deep and abiding love of massive non-tax paying faceless companies, you can of course buy the Standard Edition from Amazon, but let’s face it, why would you?
Have a lovely day, and be quick, when the First edition is gone, it is, well, gone.