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READ BY THE AUTHOR: ‘Made You Look’ by Valerie Sirr

THE LONELY PRESS is delighted to announce the publication of two new titles in the spring of 2017: The Beautiful Rooms by Valerie Sirr and Ergasy by Chris Cornwell. Today we preview a short story from Sirr’s stunningly accomplished debut collection, the excoriating ‘Made You Look’, read by the author herself. See the site next week…


The Famous Man by Jo Mazelis

I wrote this story sometime between 1988 and 1990 when I was living in London and working for a number of magazines including City Limits. The subject therefore is very much influenced by the particular atmosphere of London in the late eighties. I sent the story to one competition and one magazine but was unsuccessful both times causing me to shelve it until now.


‘Phil Says’ by John Freeman

I don’t know if you know, Phil says, they’re mixed,

the wards, and if you’re over sixty you’re in

with the geriatrics. It’s not attractive.

They find you a bed wherever they can.

The widow who lives in the cul-de-sac

in the village under the power lines

he says, was in the maternity unit.


On Writing ‘For You Are Julia’

C. G. Menon I’d been living in Cambridge a few months before I took my first trip out to the fens. Living in the suburbs of the city itself had been a study in watching movement, in watching change. By contrast, the fens were a study in timelessness. There’s something terribly contemplative about a flat…


Location, Authenticity, Purpose

Catherine McNamara On Writing ‘The Ukrainian Girl’ ‘The Ukrainian Girl’ was written as the third or fourth story in a series that has now become a collection. In this collection my aims have included the investigation of cultural displacement and adaptation, but my main and endless interest is the telling of stories. For me the…


The Capital of Life

Giles Rees Ted Hughes said, ‘As an imaginative writer, my only capital is my own life.’ Though I hesitate (correctly) to mention myself next to a writer of Hughes’ stature, I know what he meant, I think. The narrator of my new story ‘Priest’ is a British guy living and working in Moscow (as I…

point of

Notes on Spitting Distance

Siân Melangell Dafydd  Spitting Distance started in Serbia. Far from my milltir sgwâr (square mile), before I knew that I was writing it or gathering details for anything specific, I was at a literary festival called Kikinda Short (July 2011). Let me tell you a bit about this place first. Kikinda: beautiful name to say…


On flags

Katherine Stansfield Tonight, for the first time in many years, I’m missing the semi-finals of the Eurovision Song Contest. I will also miss the final itself when it’s broadcast in a few days’ time. The annual musical gathering of nations is a highlight of my year (in all seriousness – I love it), and whilst…


Notes on ‘Herr Munch Goes To The Zoo’

Diana Powell I was supposed to be writing about a shooting. A man and woman, alone in a room; a gun. The gun is fired. ‘So much blood…’ The man was Edvard Munch, painter of ‘The Scream’, one of the world’s most iconic images; the woman, Tulla Larsen, his former lover. And the blood came…

spring evening

A Spring Evening with The Lonely Crowd

Do join us this Friday, May 20th for readings from Kate Hamer, Robert Minhinnick, Samantha Wynne-Rhydderch, Leila Segal, Bethany W. Pope, Zelda Chappel, Susie Wild, James Aust & Marie Gethins. Venue: Little Man Coffee Co., Cardiff. Time: 730pm. Free admission. Hosted by John Lavin.