Sunday, 28 July 2013

Pouring Rain? Must be Festival in Edinburgh!

Anyone who has read this blog for a few years will perhaps remember that, during 2011, I wrote about my obsession with phone-boxes. To put this in a nutshell (though you’re welcome to plunder the archive) I started taking pictures of red phone-boxes when British telecom started to remove them from our streets and lanes.  I’ve taken hundreds of pictures over the years, randomly and without method. I’ve also been given plenty of phone-box tat (kind of serves me right) by friends who now associate me with the phone-box.

A couple of years ago, studying Creative Writing with the OU, in the ‘life-writing’ section of the course we were encouraged to find a ‘thread’ that might link episodes of our life-story. Naturally, I choose my old friend the phone-box. This has since unleashed a flow of creativity, including poetry, plays, and stories. I am keen to point out that, despite the association with the phone-box, none of my writing is about me. It is fiction. Why do I need to say this?

Cue advert for this year’s Festival. My show is in the PBH Free Festival, as part of the Spoken-Word strand that is now in its second year at the Edinburgh Fringe. I will be performing, with actor Ashley McLean, stories of unrequited love, jealousy, and abandonment, all set in, featuring, or mentioning that symbol of severed communication: the Phone-Box. I have performed some of these pieces over the last year or so, at events mentioned elsewhere on this blog.  

Besides bits of singing, reviewing, and flyering (for other shows as well as my own) I’ll be participating in a project called QUIET FOREST being put together by the spoken-word collective, Inky Fingers. On one day only, there will be a host of innovative installations of poetry in the Forest CafĂ©. My Gormley-inspired sequence, Walking on the Water, will be shown as poetry-and-photographs side-by-side, and possibly with a bit of background music. Maybe Antony Gormley himself will turn up!

And finally, still basking in the glory of having won the Inky Fingers Bike-Poetry Slam last month with a three-part poem based on my short-story Spoke/Unspoken, I will be making my debut at the Edinburgh International Book Festival, reading that very story. Edinburgh is (though it barely needs spoken) a City of Literature, which is why I am pleased to be participating in the Edinburgh City of Literature ‘StoryShop,’ where emerging local writers get to perform their work in the Spiegeltent at 4pm during the Book Festival. I will be there on the last day: August 26th.

Anyway, that's enough blatant self-promotion. I’m off to photograph another phone-box…

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