News, triumphs and prizes

Prize-winning sestudes, published short stories and writing endurance challenges… Just a standard month for 26ers.

I was surprised and delighted to learn that I won the Foyles bookshop competition, in conjunction with 26 and the Museum of Childhood in Bethnal Green. Foyles asked contestants to describe their favourite book from childhood in the form of a sestude. It will go up on the Foyles website in due course, but here it is:

Oh! The Places You’ll Go! by Dr. Seuss. There once was a girl. She needed to know. She stepped through the pages. She strode across words. She slipped through a poem and talked with the wind. She sang with the stars and bathed with the moon. She dined with the night ’til dawn’s bleary eye. In pink and blue the woman knew.

And another piece of news… I have just returned from a wonderful weekend with the Dark Angels in Aracena Spain. In collaboration with Sarah Farley and Gillian Colhoun (both 26 members) we produced a short film for our group project of Aracena Sculptor Alberto German. It was a wonderful opportunity and we had such a lot of fun creating it. Faye Sharpe

In search of a lost soul
Paul Murphy continues his quest to find the hidden Laurie Lee. Time is against him as Lee’s 2014 centenary is approaching fast and the book needs to be written. Lee walked through Spain on the eve of the Spanish Civil War in 1935. Paul is retracing that walk this Autumn in search of the elusive spirit, seeking a glimpse of the inner soul. Walking through a country, once again in crisis and on the brink. Follow his journey at

The unexpected guest in Liverpool
Until 25 November, Liverpool sports its most creative clothes. Liverpool Biennial is in town, delivering cultural surprises around every corner. The UK’s largest international contemporary art festival, it’s diverse, challenging and above all huge fun. A city of storytellers, this year’s theme is ‘the unexpected guest’. Bridget Waters

White Poppies
My stories, published by Pewter Rose Press, explore the experience of women amongst warriors in a wide range of settings – from myth to Roman and Renaissance history, from World War II to the present day. Vivien Jones

Working for Brand Perfect
Having been freelancing since the New Year, today I’ve returned to the world of PAYE, starting work for Monotype as the editor of Brand Perfect, an initiative they’ve founded to try to get brands thinking about using technology sensibly and about having a better project. Neil Ayres

100 Hours of Solitude
David Varela is putting himself through an extraordinary test of writing endurance to raise money for the Arvon Foundation. For 100 hours straight, he will be taking requests and then writing live, on webcam, with every keystroke appearing online as he types, while maintaining a vow of silence. Pledge a donation and a make a request (from just $5) at

Time After Time
My latest novel has just been published for Kindle. It’s called Time After Time and is a time travelling dark romantic sci-fi comedy. Sort of Terminator meets Attack The Block and way better than Looper! Marc Nash

Releasing Two Birds From One Cage
Greg Delanty, the Irish American poet, is making a rare visit to London. The Poetry School has teamed up with the Poetry Society to offer Greg’s workshop on avoiding cliché, Releasing Two Birds From One Cage. It takes place on Saturday 24 November. Find out more here.

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