The year hasn’t slowed down as it has begun to come to a close.
Last Sunday I had my first play ‘Midlife of Margot’ put on by Mind Your Head theatre at the Ophelia theatre, Dalston.
I had bits and bobs put on at uni, but nothing of note beyond our classes and wider writer and acting circles, so I was very excited.
I write poetry in the main and so I was very excited to have writing in another form produced.
Mind Your Head is run by two women, Marni and Jess, and it’s a really brilliant idea. Take new theatrical writing, put them together with actors and directors and put on the plays.
Around a hundred people turned up to see some incredibly plays on the theme of gender. My play was directed by the really superb Lizzy Steel.
It was a fantastic experience for me. I handed over a script to Lizzy and she tinkered with it, made it fit in with the venue and forged something of real beauty.
I had shivers when I heard my words, and I delighted in the reactions of the audience. Afterwards I made sure I said the biggest thank you I could muster to Lizzy for making the whole process so easy and for making my idea a reality…so thank you again Lizzy!
I’m going to try again for their next show, so fingers crossed!
Then on Tuesday I went to see the podcast No Such Thing As A Fish being recorded in Tufnell Park.
For those of you who don’t know, NSTAAF is a podcast written, produced and presented by the Qi Elves (those people who make Stephen Fry look very clever).
The podcast was hilarious and they were brilliant hosts for the evening. An absolute touch for me was the handwritten Christmas cards they have to everyone who came. It’s the little things that make you realise just how valuable you are as a fan and supporter of creative works.
I had the absolute privilege of being able to stay behind afterwards to talk to and have drinks with Anna, James, Andy and Dan (like totes on first name terms…!) and their friends and partners. They were just brilliant, interesting, kind and generous people.
Too often sadly artists can be locked in to a world where they don’t sit and talk to their fans – so I was thrilled to have this opportunity. And like a total fanboy, I got the book of theirs that my grandparents bought for me signed 😃
They’re doing more live shows next year and I desperately want to recommend them but I fear they’ll sell out before I get some…so as a reminder, it’s an awful experience and I’d discourage you all from going…!
On Thursday I went to a restaurant to write my first restaurant review for After Nyne magazine and I’m very happy to now be a contributing food editor for them.
In book news, I’ve been working with my publisher to get the cover art together and it’s all looking very exciting. They’re really looking after me as the March launch date approaches. I feel slightly underprepared but I’ve got time yet.
This has been a heck of a year. A book deal, some more in the pipeline, a play put on, I’ve done lots of gigs and become an international poet (Wales!). Next year should hopefully hold a US reading tour, and if I can get my act together an Edinburgh show and another book.
If you’d have told me on 20 December 2013 that 2014 would have held what it has them I’d have laughed. So as for 2015, I’m going in as unprepared as I did to 2014 in the hope that being unaware is the writing equivalent of lucky socks.
Have a very Merry Christmas everyone and may your 2015 be blessed with rewards for your efforts.
And just in case you were wondering…a Christmas jumper must be knitted not printed and the head of a turkey turns blue when it’s turned on.