Dunlin Press are delighted to launch Alex Toms’ debut poetry collection, Lessons for an Apprentice Eel Catcher, at The Wivenhoe Bookshop on Thursday 11th October 2018.
In this stunning, otherworldly collection of poetry, Alex Toms introduces us to a troupe of curious characters to explore themes of love, womanhood and sex. At the centre of this collection is the eel catcher, a shadowy figure who lives on the fringes of everyday experience. The eel catcher weaves willow traps, and tales of folklore and magic, evoking an East Anglia inhabited by poachers, witches and ghosts.
In her poems, Toms skilfully summons the uncanny, and out of it draws a slithering sense with which we are all familiar. Here are all the snares of life, and also perhaps, a spell that could set us free.
The poems are accompanied by specially commissioned individual paper-cut illustrations and bespoke photography.
Alex Toms is a repeat winner in national poetry competitions and in 2015 was Manchester Cathedral Poet of the Year. She is widely published in magazines, journals and anthologies. Find out more about the launch here.
This is our manuscript for Est: Collected Reports from East Anglia, and in it we’ve laid out the submissions that have made it into the final publication, due for publication in February 2015.
But who’s in it? Well, we have an amazing selection of poets, fiction and travel writers, journalists and the occasional academic and we’ll be revealing the names during the course of this week via our Twitter feed. You are following us, aren’t you? We’re very pleasant company. No? Look, we’re here: @dunlinpress.
It’s getting exciting now, so do make sure you check back for updates.
Thank you, thank you and thank you again. We have received so many great submissions for Est – what a creative, talented and generous part of the world East Anglia is.
You’ve sent us insightful prose, elegant lines of poetry, personal histories, nature writing, photography and some attention-grabbing psychogeographical splendour. The submissions tick off locations around the region from the fens to Harwich and from the north Norfolk Coast to Southend.
Can we thank you again? Oh, go on: thank you!
The next few weeks will see us sifting through your writing and making the difficult decision about what we can fit into Est and what, sadly, we’ll have to leave out. When that’s done, we’ll be in touch with everyone who sent us their work. There’s an exciting late-summer and autumn ahead and it really looks as if Est is shaping up to be a unique tour of East Anglia through poetry, prose and pictures.
We’ll be keeping you up to date with what goes on all the way through the process and tweeting extra thoughts over at @dunlinpress – so do stay in touch.
There we were, on a sunny morning sat by the pond at Westleton, waiting for Bob’s remarkable book shop to open (look here and be amazed), and apologising to the lame duck that had just hiked up the bank to greet us and quack for some food (sorry, we had none).
And there it was: suddenly, there was just one month left open for the submissions to Est, our collection of writing from and about East Anglia. Yes, the submissions period closes at the end of July.
June has been good to us. We’ve had a number of submissions sent in from established and emerging writers – insightful and entertaining stuff, with some strong prose and poetry. There is still room for a few more passengers on the, er, Dunlin Bus that’s heading (oh dear) all the way round East Anglia, however. So, if you have some good writing that you think suitable for our foray into the psychogeography of the region, get in touch. See our ‘submissions’ page for more details.
At the end of this month, the real work for us will begin: sorting through the submissions and plotting our course. We’ll have more news soon – oh, and do follow us on Twitter (@dunlinpress) and check out our other ‘social’ outlets for updates and inspiration (See our ‘contact’ page).
If you have already sent something in, thank you so much. If you’ve yet to, well, the summer won’t wait for ever…