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A wonderful event hosted by the adorable East Avenue Books – a beautiful mix of poetry, champagne, friends and sunshine, what better way to spend a Sunday afternoon!

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Peter, the bookshop owner, MC’d the event and started by introducing talented local poet Jill Gower to officially launch eight of the 11 chapbooks in the Picaro Poets series published by Ginninderra Press (those from South Australian poets).

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Jill briefly spoke about each poet in the series, quoting specific lines and sharing snapshots of their work to convey the variety and depth the new line has to offer. Next up was Brenda Matthews, editor of the series, and who is a fine poet herself with a chapbook of her own in there (published under her maiden name Brenda Eldridge). Brenda paid special thanks to her partner Stephen, who was lurking in the corner and later, I discovered, prefers to stay in the background, for his advice and hard work in producing the new-look chapbooks. Brenda also made special mention of me, who was the first to be accepted in the new series and got pulled in by the first poem I found out after!

So I was first up and read three poems from Smashed glass at midnight – ‘Admission’, ‘Offspring’ and ‘Visiting hours’ – all of which some of the audience had heard before at my launch and there were a few familiar faces – Jules Leigh Koch, Heather Taylor Johnson and Rob Walker.

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Next up was a reading from Kate Deller-Evans’ collection Open Inspection, who unfortunately was not able to attend, quickly followed by Margo Poirier who read an entertaining poem about Centrelink from her chapbook Wellspring. Zenda Vecchio was up next reading from her collection Luminous, followed by Lyn Williams and Rosemary Winderlich reading from their collections Stray Thoughts and Suspended Lives respectively. Finally it was Brenda’s turn, who shared a delightful piece about how even the toughest nuts can have a soft centre from her chapbook Not what they might seem.

Jude Aquilina, an amazing local poet, was also not able to attend so I brought a copy of her chapbook, Ship Tree, to read at leisure when I have chance to breathe again. I have also been asked to be guest poet at a local poetry group, so watch this space for further details!

My chapbook.  On a bookshelf.  In a real live bookshop.  Must get out more I know.  But thanks Ken Bolton at the Dark Horsey Bookshop!

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And a reminder about the Picaro Poets series launch at 2pm this Sunday at East Avenue Books, Clarence Park – would love to see you there if you can make it!

Ginninderra Press, in association with East Avenue Books, are celebrating their new look Picaro Poets series on Sunday 27 September at 2:00pm.

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Jill Gower will be launching the chapbooks, which I am honoured to have been the first selected for the new series, and there will be readings from poets Kate Deller-Evans, Brenda Eldridge, Zenda Vecchio, Lyn Williams, Rosemary Winderlich and me!

So if you’re around and interested, pop into East Avenue Books in Clarence Park for an afternoon of thought-provoking poetry, gorgeous books, drinks, nibbles and, fingers crossed, some sunshine!

Well here it is folks, my first collection of poetry! And I haven’t stopped smiling!!

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This collection has been hovering around for a while, waiting (and not always patiently), to feel right enough to be allowed out. And when it finally does, reads well (I’m biased of course!) and flows, it’s such a wonderful moment, like you’ve finally achieved that elusive whole. Anyway, I digress…

The chapbook contains 20 poems that explore loss – of the self, another or the connection between – which I hope provoke a few thoughts rather than a need to reach for the tissues!

I am so pleased with how it’s turned out, having been beautifully put together by Brenda and Stephen Matthews at Ginninderra Press, who have had the painstaking experience of dealing with a poet and her precious perfections! And I am honoured to be their first of the new Picaro Poets, which I have no doubt will become a fantastic series as it continues to grow.

So I’m taking Brenda’s advice, of giving my chapbook the life it deserves, by arranging a launch (further details to follow shortly), so for those of you interested keep an eye out, while the other one can be reading it  🙂

is going to be published! Needless to say I am over the moon, with the cow and everything!!

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It will be a chapbook, part of the Picaro Poets series published by Ginninderra Press based in Port Adelaide, so about 20 poems. Short and sweet I know but I am absolutely thrilled, a book of all my own work, how amazing is that, and it will even be available in bookshops!!

Ginninderra Press is an award-winning independent publisher run by Stephen Matthews that provides opportunities for new and emerging writers, as well as those writing about more non-mainstream topics. They only accept a very small amount of manuscripts they receive, so I am really quite honoured they are publishing mine.

Having recently acquired Picaro Press, an independent publisher based in Melbourne run by Rob Riel, Stephen and his partner Brenda have developed a new series of Picaro Poets to continue the tradition of Picaro Press chapbooks. So I have been working closely with Brenda to develop mine – choosing a cover design, editing content, adding acknowledgements, writing an author biography, etc. – and I can’t tell you how excited I am to see the final product, you know, just a bit! Launch date to be announced, woohoo!!

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