news blog

Cambrian Mountains Poetry Competition anthology

On Saturday 2 March the inaugural Cambrian Mountains Society poetry competition prize giving took place at Pontrhydfendigaid. I read my poem 'Day trip to the mountains', which was highly commended. 

Over the past couple of months I have been working on editing a competition anthology for the Society, which includes background to the prize, judges comments and of course the winning, highly commended and longlist poems. Cover illustration by the talented Lowri Bowden. The anthology is pocket size and available to purchase from cambrian-mountains.co.uk.

It was a lovely afternoon, and wonderful to hear poems in English and Welsh, and lively discussion about poetry in Wales. 

 

Cardiff Writers' Circle - Poetry competition adjudication

Cardiff Writers' Circle have asked me to adjudicate and host their 2024 Poetry Competition. Following a 'hint and tips' session for poetry competitions that I ran for members, closing date for entries is 12 February, with an in person prize giving 11 March. 

I'm excited to read the entries, and looking forward to a fun evening in March. This prize is possible due to the support of Literature Wales.

Nightingale & Sparrow - Managing Editor

It’s been a real delight to be part of the Nightingale & Sparrow team for the last couple of years. As of the end of 2023 I will be stepped down from the managing editor role. It has been a privilege to read the poetry submissions, as well as manage the team, correspond with submitees, and oversee production. Wishing the best of luck to Juliette and the team, when they come back after their hiatus.

Poem in Propel, Issue 7, edited by Pascal Petit

Issue Seven of the online Propel magazine, conceived by Anthony Anaxagorou is out now. Link here. Each issue is guest edited, my poem 'radiator bleed key' was selected by Pascal Petit for Issue Seven. I have been a long term fan of Pascal's work, and am very grateful to be one of 20 poems within this issue. Pascals introduction is here, extract below:

'The trawl through the thousands of poems from almost four hundred entries took weeks. I read slowly, hoping not to miss a stunner, alert to new ways of making a poem. If there was any doubt in my mind I stopped and read it again as open-mindedly and attentively as I could.... I had to go by instinct – when I reread, if a poem gave me a pleasurable feeling of recognition, I sensed that here was something special. I’d switch into learning mode. What new world is this writer creating? Why does the imagery and tone feel like a good friend? Even if that friend is having a hard time, I wanted their company.

My twenty selections are an eclectic bunch and I admire them all. There are three long poems interspersed by one-pagers and shorts. Very short poems are hard to write well – I admit I was on the lookout for these, and was amply rewarded.'

Writing weekend at St Davids

Wonderful writing weekend away at St Davids, West Wales. Swam in the sea everyday, despite the drizzle, and walked the coastal path from St Non’s Well. 

Workshops facilitated by the generous Claire Syder, fantastic company too.

 

Black Bough Poetry Edition Guest Editor

I'm very excited that I will be the guest editor for Black Bough Poetry's next edition, there was a one day submission window, on Tuesday 4th July. Entry was by tweeting one brand new imagistic poem, 20 lines max. to @toptweettuesday and @marcellenewbold on Twitter. Poems are unpublished but could be a previous @TopTweetTuesday  poem. 

The edition will include an invited guest poet, and also poems from Black Bough's open mic attendees, launch date early Spring 2024.  

The talented Emma Connolly, a Cardiff based artist, will be providing the cover art, and the title of the edition, which I can't wait to share.

Voices on the Bridge Poetry night

A joyous evening last night at Clwb Y Bont in Pontypridd - a mixture of poetry and music, and a few local ciders - including an impromptu collaboration between Ben on guitar, and Pete on his harmonica.  

Thanks to Sion Tomos Owen, Mike Jenkins, Pete Akinwunmi, Nick McGaughey, Mary Kaye, Ben Wildsmith & Rob Cullen who also performed, and Rob who hosted 'Voices on the Bridge'. I did a 15 minutes set including a couple of new poems about everyday objects, the poem 'Returning' which was illustrated for the 'Walking Home' anthology, and of course a couple of losing Dad poems.  

Thanks to Susie for the photos.

Tiger Bay Poetry Inaugural night

A new poetry night has started in Cardiff Bay 'Tiger Bay Poetry' at the Casablanca Cafe in Mount Stuart Square, hosted by Natasha Gauthier. The inaugural night featured Taz Rahman, Wendy Allen and Gareth Writer-Davies. It was a wonderful evening and I read  a couple of poems at the open mic - including a mother / kraken reflection.

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Taz and Wendy reading, poster

Matthew M.C. Smith 'The Keepers of Aeons' book launch, Swansea

A great day in Swansea for Matthew M. C. Smith's, editor at Black Bough Poetry, book launch in the local tap room. 'The Keeper of Aeons' is published by The Broken Spine.  Matt read and introduced his new collection, and the open mic included Lauren Thomas, Ivor Daniel, myself and Polly Oliver among others, as well as Matt Gilbert, whose latest collection 'Street Sailing' is published by Black Bough.

So much fun to meet online poetry friends 'in real life', and hear them read. 

I read a couple of my poems from the Ty Newydd writing retreat a couple of months ago, themed around inheritance, and mermaids! 

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Matt Smith book launch

Wedding poem commission complete

I’ve just completed a commission for a poem for a wedding. A gift from the sister of the groom. What a joyous time I’ve had researching pottery and floristry (their passions) and their personalities & bond. A privilege, wonderful !

Murenger Poetry Night headliner

In a couple of weeks time, on Wednesday 14 June, starting at 7.30pm I will be headlining at the regular Murenger Poetry Night, in Newport. Hosted in a 19th Century pub, my 2x 20 minute sets will be followed by Open Mic sessions - sign ups available on the night. Its always a relaxed, friendly, poetry filled night. Thanks to Alan Roderick for the invite.

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Marcelle reading poetry

Ty Newydd Spring Masterclass

Exciting news today. I have been accepted on the Spring Masterclass 2023 at Ty Newydd Writing Centre, run by Literature Wales. This year the class is hosted by Gillian Clarke and Carol Ann Duffy (2 previous poet laureates). One of twelve poets, I will be taking part in the week long residential, at the end of May. Time to stock up on new notepads!