What stories can we tell about the people who make us into poets? Verse Mentors is a new four-part podcast series exploring the world of poetry and mentoring.

Explore the often unsung web of support that gets our best words into the best places.

Guests include Romalyn Ante, Malika Booker, Aviva Dautch, Andrew McMillan, Nick Makoha, and Caleb Parkin.

The series will be launched across Apple and Spotify on October 7th 2021.

Register below for your subscription link.

Episode 1, ‘What Do Poets Teach?’, explores the importance of mentoring for developing new writers. Our guests Romalyn Ante, Aviva Dautch, and Caleb Parkin talk about their experience of being mentored, and their work for Poetry Ambassadors, a new mentoring scheme for young poets run by Artful Scribe and the Winchester Poetry Festival.

Episode 2, ‘How Do Poets Learn?’, examines the hidden histories of mentoring in the UK. Malika Booker describes how she set up a poetry workshop in her kitchen to create a safe space for more diverse voices, Lise Jalliant explains how the Carcanet archives revealed the significant role of women in poetry publishing, and Sue Dymoke discusses new research showing the impact of competitive mentoring schemes on young writers.

Episode 3, ‘What Do Poets Know?’, explores the various places and contexts for poetry mentoring. Andrew McMillan considers the role of informal mentoring and the importance of creative writing teaching in universities, Heidi Williamson outlines the power of professional mentoring, and Vidyan Ravinthiran talks about his role in the Ledbury Poetry Critics scheme, which supports more diverse reviewing cultures in UK poetry.

Episode 4, ‘Who Mentors the Mentor?’, focuses on poets and mentors whose have created wider structures for poets to give and receive mentoring. Nick Makoha describes the role of Obsidian Foundation, and Pascale Petit and Mimi Khalvati explain why they set up the Poetry School.


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