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Faber New Poets

At the start of this year a new Arts Council-funded initiative was announced - the prestigious poetry press Faber were to release a series of pamphlets by young poets, influenced by the continuing success of tall-lighthouse's Pilot series, edited by Roddy Lumsden.

Like the Pilot series, each poet receives editorial input and a pamphlet of their poems is published, but the Faber scheme also offers some financial help for the poets.

Now, the first pamphlets in the series are scheduled to be published in early October of this year. And the selected poets - Fiona Benson (pamphlet cover pictured above), Heather Phillipson, Toby Martinez de las Rivas and Jack Underwood - seem to represent a fair cross-section of the type of poetry emerging from this new generation of poets; unusual, edgy, contemporary and occasionally free-wheeling... hard to say anything substantial here without going into great detail (and even that would only be based on the handful of poems I've seen by these poets in magazines). Needless to say, they promise to make for interesting reading alongside the Pilot series, and will be worth checking out.

2010 will see the next four poets in the Faber series also published - Joe Dunthorne, Annie Katchinska, Sam Riviere and Tom Warner. Of these, I'll be especially interested to see Sam Riviere's pamphlet, particularly if it includes poems as strong as his second place winner in the 2008 Poetry London competition.

Where the Pilot scheme is concerned, talented young poets Charlotte Runcie and Richard O'Brien (both editors of the fine Pomegranate magazine) are also due launch their pamphlets in October, following on from the March launch of Amy Key's instead of stars and Sarah Howe's a certain chinese encyclopaedia. In related news, I'll also be reading at a tall-lighthouse event, "tall reflections", in Cambridge on the 15th September, along with Alan Buckley and invited guest readers. Do come along if you're able.

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About the Author

Welcome to the website of the English poet and critic, Ben Wilkinson.
Ben was born in Staffordshire and now lives in Sheffield, South Yorkshire. He received his first degree from the University of Sheffield, and holds an MA and PhD from Sheffield Hallam University. He has won numerous awards for his poetry, including the Poetry Business Competition and a 2014 Northern Writers' Award
His debut full collection of poems, Way More Than Luck, appeared from Seren Books in February 2018.
He is a keen distance runner, lifelong Liverpool Football Club fan, and among other things he works as poetry critic for The Guardian and the Times Literary Supplement. You can find many of his reviews on this site.
To contact Ben about readings, workshops, or for any other enquiries, you can drop him a line at benwilko(at sign)gmail.com. Unfortunately, I am not able to consider unsolicited requests from authors for book reviews.

You can follow Ben on Twitter - @BenWilko85 - and on Facebook.

You can find B…

Way More Than Luck (Seren Books, 2018)

From the thumping heartbeat of the distance runner to the roar of football terraces across the decades, Ben Wilkinson’s debut confronts the struggles and passions that come to shape a life. Beginning with an interrogation of experiences of clinical depression and the redemptive power of art and running, the collection centres on a series of vivid character portraits, giving life to some of football's legends. By turns frank, comic, sinister and meditative – ‘the trouble with you, son, is that all your brains are in your head’ – these poems uncover the beautiful game’s magic and absurdity, hopes and disappointments, as striking metaphors for our everyday dramas. Elsewhere there are tender love poems, political satire and strange dream worlds, in an urgently lyrical book of poems that take many forms and modes of address: pantoum, sonnet, sestina; epistle, confession, dramatic monologue. All are united by a desire to speak with searching clarity about matters of the heart. Way More …