I’ve got some news. I’m now a Visiting Teaching Fellow at Manchester Metropolitan University! I’m deeply fortunate. It’s a great opportunity to meet other writers and engage with students passionate about writing. I’m completely new to something like this and I’ve got to learn.

A New Home

I was delighted to find out the old Cornerhouse is now run by Manchester Metropolitan. People call it 70 Oxford Street. That’s where a lot of the writers meet. I guess it’s a going to become a sort of new home for me. That is until the opening of Manchester’s new Poetry Library in 2020.

The Poetry Library

The Poetry Library is a huge thing for the city. It links well with many things I’m interested in. Manchester’s newish status us a UNESCO City of Literature bodes well for the Poetry Library and for literature as a whole. It’s something speical to look forward to.

Manchester Mushaira

Earlier this year, I helped bring the first Mushaira (Urdu poetry recital) to the university. It was a stunning success and it’s something the university is keen to develop. We’re going to do another one in February 2019. Can’t wait.

I write a little in Urdu, but I don’t consider myself an Urdu poet. Incidentally, my grandfather was an Urdu poet. His father in turn wrote poetry…in Pashto. So, it’s not an unusual in my family to skip languages between generations…but it’s always nice to go back and rediscover one.

Young Shakespeares

I’ve been mulling how best to develop things now I am a Teaching Fellow. The role adds to Young Shakespeares, which I set up as a project last year and which was established formally this year. It’s a departure from what I’ve been doing in recent years, but in reality it’s a return to what I love most, which is story-telling, writing in all its various guises and connecting with people. Therefore, the Teaching Fellow post weaves many strands together into a visible whole. Something finally to write home about!