States of Independence annual independent press day is one of the highlights of my social calendar. Held in the Clephan building at Leicester’s DMU, it’s a coming together of publishers, writers, readers, students and educators from across the midlands, a celebration of breadth and diversity. It’s an opportunity to meet new faces and catch up with friends. Workshops, readings, panels, seminars and showcases run over four sessions throughout the day; it’s often a matter of which to miss out on. And the book fair is a bibliophile’s dream!
This year, I’m doubly excited, as Caroline Cook will be launching her Soundswrite Press pamphlet, Primer:
Caroline runs Poetry Stanza Leicester and is a fellow member of Soundswrite women’s poetry group (which meets twice monthly to share and discuss poetry by others and to workshop each other’s works in progress). So I’m half-hoping there will be poems I’ve admired and enjoyed in workshop sessions and at local open mic events. I’m also prepared to be surprised, challenged and entertained by turns, if I know anything of Caroline’s writing.
I’m itching to get my hands on a copy – it’s strictly under wraps until the day, so all I have to go on is the cover/title/chosen colour (of paint primer). So I’m wondering if there’s a clue to its theme, here:
1. a substance used as a preparatory coat on wood, metal, or canvas, especially to prevent the absorption of subsequent layers of paint or the development of rust
2. a cap or cylinder containing a compound which responds to friction or an electrical impulse and ignites the charge in a cartridge or explosive
My anticipation is mixed with a certain amount of trepidation, too: with my Soundswrite Press pamphlet forthcoming, Primer will, I’m sure, be a hard act to follow!
States of Independence is on Saturday 15th March: 10.30 – 4.30 at the Clephan Building on Bonner’s Lane/Oxford Street, Leicester. If you’re coming along, I look forward to saying hi at the Soundswrite Press stall and at Caroline’s 3.00 PM launch (please check programme on the day for room allocation). The 40-minute showcase will also feature readings from the Soundswrite anthology.