Forward Prize Shortlist

I’m not really up to date with recent events on my blog, but this deserved immediate attention.

Jen’s book Nigh-No-Place has been shortlisted for this year’s Forward Prize Best Collection:

The winner will be announced on the 8th of October.

Swimming in the sun

Have just spent a very relaxing 3 days in the south of France at Dave and Kit’s. Although it was pouring with rain when I arrived on Thursday night, we’ve had nothing but sunshine for the last 3 days. Am now sporting a rather sore sunburn as a result of midday swimming and snoozing on sun loungers (typically English, I tend to forget what the effect of sun is, I see it so rarely). Dave and Kit hosted a great party last night, and we’ve all met up again at lunch today for a summer BBQ. Off to the airport now, and tomorrow morning, onto Norway, where the forecast is for rain for the next few days …. guess the good weather couldn’t last.


A shameless plug for something else very exciting that landed in my Inbox this week – an advance copy of Jen’s new book Nigh-No-Place. It’s due to be published on the 10th February, and, along with her first book Almanacs, is available from Amazon.


Despite the fact that my birthday is still a week or so away, I have already been receiving presents!

Imagine my surprise when I opened my Inbox a couple days ago to find an orphaned elephant. Shimba, a 18 month old Kenyan elephant, was orphaned when his mother died after an injury to her trunk. He is now being cared for by the David Sheldrake Wildlife Trust, and will hopefully be rehabilitated to the wild when he grows up.


After 5 years in Holland, this year I celebrated Sinterklaas for the first time, with my friend Fiona and her family. Sinterklaas is a traditional Dutch celebration which takes place each year on the evening of the 5th December. According to tradition, we each drew a name out of a hat, and bought a surpise present for that person. The presents are accompanied by a poem – in Dutch of course – which was quite a challenge for me – both to write, and also to read aloud.