It is always good to have work published in magazines you really admire. The North, published by the Poetry Business, is such a magazine.
I first submitted some poems (in retrospect, probably not very good poems) in 2010. They came back with a note from Peter Sansom. He wrote that although they wouldn’t be taking any of my poems this time, they liked things in every poem. I was disappointed of course, but later realised that such encouragement isn’t always forthcoming from busy editors, many of whom send out printed rejection slips or standard e-mails.
The following year I took out a subscription to the magazine and went up to Sheffield for a workshop or two. I was extremely nervous at first, but after a couple of visits I was greeted by Peter and Ann as an old friend. I also got to meet some lovely supportive people, including John ‘The Great Fogginzo’ Foggin, Will Kemp and River Woolton.
My first poem in the magazine appeared in 2012 alongside poets whose work I greatly admire- poets like Rory Waterman, Kim Moore, Suzannah Evans and Julie Mellor. A lot has happened since my first forays into the poetry world in 2009 and I’ve been extremely fortunate. Earlier this year Pam Thompson invited me to support Peter and Ann, along with the brilliant Maria Taylor, at the Y theatre in Leicester. I’m pleased to say I have two poems in the latest Issue – actually three poems, since David Cooke quotes my little poem ‘Wren’ in its entirety in his rather generous review of ‘The Sun Bathers’. This issue of the magazine has been guest edited by Jonathan Davidson and Jackie Wills and contains 138 pages of poems, articles, reviews and features.