On Saturday 19th the Saboteur awards were held in London to celebrate literary achievement which is underrepresented in the industry. This may mean independent, underfunded, or experimental work which does not fall under traditional publishing. I was overwhelmed by the talent and the standard of work which was exhibited through spoken word, workshops, panels and simple conversations that I had with other writers, learning about their work and their projects.
I was heartened that groups such as poetry described in London exist, led by Miss Yankee, who performed a gorgeous rendition of the spoken word poem about abusive relationships, and explained how her group helps those suffering with mental health problems to express themselves through writing, regardless of natural literary talent, explaining the writing itself is a form of therapy.
I made my first zine in a workshop, and enjoyed making art for art’s sake, being the first time I had picked up a gluestick for a artistic expression and collaging probably since GCSE art. I know that Sabotage reviews DIY zines, which really does turn literary world on its head, because it proves that all you need is a creative willpower and an audience to share your work with.
Of course the highlight of the night was the coming runner up for Best anthology next to #metoo. It really did hammer home to me the power that we’ll hold as individuals to take an idea and fly with it, and I can’t wait to start new projects which consume me just as much.
Thank you to Claire Trevien and to her team who reward underrepresented writers each year, I feel very lucky to have been included in 2018.
Read Please Hear What I'm Not Saying here.