Publications, Submissions and Shortlists

Anthology of Young PoetsAs July takes hold, we have (as ever) lots going on at Paper Swans.

Two weeks ago, we published our Anthology of Young Poets, which is a slim pamphlet of poets aged 16-18 years old. We really wanted to give a platform to young, emerging poets, as well as let them dip their toes into what it’s like to get published (not a speedy process!). In fact, it’s something we may well repeat annually, as it is something we really care about and to be able to give opportunity and voice to young poets is a positive and altruistic thing to do. Of course, we’d also love you to buy a copy! Hopefully, it is also something that can be used within teaching, too — to encourage other writers of a similar age to write and see what is achievable. As a taster, here is a poem from the book by Hannah Hodgson, aged 18:


Biology says I’m an adult –
that the kid in me ran away,
pocket money doesn’t exist
but tax does.

One friend worked fifty-five hours
this week, her eyes
filled with barcodes
not school books.

Another is training to be a pilot –
tells me of textbooks
that’d use up
baggage allowance.

I did my first weekly shop,
aisles like pool lengths –
held breath attempting to find
favourite brands.

I’m symptomatic of adulthood,
a school leaver of three months –
clean paper, printed on:
Female, Adult.

Hannah Hodgson

We also have submissions open for two projects. One is our anthology of flash fiction, which has already had an amazing response. We really think there isn’t enough exposure for flash writing (and we like flash flash!). Again, this is something we are looking into making an annual thing. What we love about flash fiction is its brevity; that (like a poem) each piece can be read quickly, but digested slowly and then re-read and loved. We want to think of a flash anthology in a bag, a pocket…on the side table, waiting to be dipped in to. My best friend has all of our poetry books in her loo, so there’s another option!

Also open for submission is our new ‘Pocket Poetry’ range. This is likely to be a continual submission opening, with the idea of producing tiny, pocket-sized poetry books on different themes. The current themes are Love and Anger — poles apart, yet often off-setting each other. You can submit to one theme or both. See our submissions page for full details.

Lastly (but not leastly), I am pleased to say that at the end of July we will publish our shortlisted poets for our Poetry Pamphlet Prize, with the winner being announced in early August. Mid-submission, last year’s winner (Elisabeth Sennitt Clough’s Glass) won the Saboteur Award for best poetry pamphlet and, this year, we had many very high-quality pamphlets submitted, which Jill Munro has been delighted to read. Thank you to all who submitted.

So, we are using our summer to hatch plans and make things happen. Do keep an eye on our Facebook page and social media accounts for more frequent updates and thank you for your ongoing support of Paper Swans and other indie presses.

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