Tangled Roots anthology out now!

The Tangled Roots anthology is now available to buy here.

Tangled Roots cover

The book features a total of fifteen true stories of mixed and multi-racial families from Yorkshire and the North of England, including my short memoir ‘The Memory Album’.

It has been a privilege to be involved with this Arts Council-funded project devised by Katy Massey, and I’ve really enjoyed reading the often unexpected and deeply moving tales that make up this collection.

Tangled Roots book launch

And some non-Something Rhymed news too…

Book launch invitation:

Tangled Roots: true-life tales of mixed and multi-racial families in Yorkshire

You are invited to the launch of the TANGLED ROOTS anthology of true stories by mixed raced people and their families. For launch night only, the book will be available to buy at £8 – 20% off the cover price.

Date: Wednesday 5 March 2014

Drinks reception: 6pm – FREE

Performance by Tangled Roots writers: 7pm – FREE with a copy of the book, £4 without

Venue: The Café Bar, Seven Arts, Harrogate Road, LS7 3PD

Please join us for a drink, to buy the book, and to hear some of the great stories unearthed by the project.

Two more bits of news: long-listed for Mslexia Novel Competition and publication of my Tangled Roots memoir

An email arrived in my inbox on Tuesday afternoon bearing the wonderful news that my first novel A Tiny Speck of Black and then Nothing is on the long-list for the Mslexia Novel Competition.

Then on Friday I received another very welcome message, this time from the writer Katy Massey, to let me know that my memoir about being brought up in a mixed English and Japanese household in York has been published on her Tangled Roots website. The same piece should appear in book form some time in early 2014.

I’ve blogged about Tangled Roots before here. One of the things that I’ve most enjoyed about this project has been meeting the other featured writers, and having the chance to read their stories and poems about their own experiences of a being part of multiracial families in Yorkshire. I strongly recommend that you take a look at their work.

A good week: third place in Yeovil Literary Prize and launch of the Tangled Roots project

Having had to keep it quiet until now, it’s good to be able to start letting people know that my novel A Tiny Speck of Black and then Nothing has taken third place in the Yeovil Literary Prize, judged by Tracy Chevalier.

I’ve long been an admirer of Chevalier’s prose and her writerly eye for detail, and so her kind comments about the book make the experience extra special. You can read her words about all the novel prize winners, and find out more about the prize, here.

Another pleasure this week was being able to attend the launch night of Tangled Roots, a project documenting the experiences of multi-racial families from Yorkshire. I’ve blogged about it before here. There are currently seven writers involved with the project, set up by Katy Massey, and photos of six of us will be displayed at Seven in Leeds until the middle of October.

If you can’t make it to the exhibition, you can view the images, taken by photographer Anthony Farrimond, on the Tangled Roots website. There’s lots more information about the project there too.

Tangled Roots project launch

Tangled Roots flyer

I’m really happy that Katy Massey has asked me to play a part in her Arts Council-funded project, Tangled Roots – writing mixed-race Yorkshire. I first met Katy through last year’s SI Leeds Literary Prize. Jane Steele (another SI Leeds competitor, who ended up coming joint-third with me) will also be involved in Tangled Roots, which will include an anthology of work, to be published in early 2014.

Other contributing writers are Michelle Scally Clarke, Adam Lowe, Sai Murray and Seni Seneviratne. It was good to meet up with them and share stories about our families when we gathered to have our pictures taken by Anthony Farrimond.

I’m looking forward to viewing the results at the launch. If you live in or near Leeds, and are free on 19th, it would be great to see you there too.

SI Leeds Literary Prize award evening

I’ve just returned home after a lovely twenty-four hours when I travelled down by train to the Ilkley Literature Festival with my good friend Sarah. I’ve known Sarah for years and having her there to accompany me to the inaugural SI Leeds Literary Prize award evening helped make the experience even more special.

Bonnie Greer and Margaret Busby opened the evening at the Ilkey Playhouse with a fascinating talk about their own personal histories as writers and some reflections on the publishing world of today and the spaces that Black and Asian writers occupy within it.

Then the prizes were announced, with Minoli Salgado being awarded the winner’s trophy, followed by Karen Onojaife in second place, and Jane Steele and I in joint third.

A high point of the evening for me was being able to hear the other winning writers reading their work aloud. I hope to hear lots more from them and the other shortlisted writers, Katy Massey and Anita Sivakumaran, in the future.