Wanted: Lincolnshire Poet Laureate

I’m not complaining but when I was Warwick Poet Laureate, I wasn’t paid and most Regional Poet Laureate positions are the same – ie: honorary. There were plenty of benefits though, not least some ‘commissioned’ poetry, the offer of a creative writing class, requests for after-dinner speaking and the chance to host open mic events – all of which did (and still do) bring in a small but satisfying fee.

So I was surprised – and pleased – to see an advert today for a Lincolnshire Poet Laureate (closing date for applications: 21st February 2011) which is offering £4000 for a 6-month tenure. Who says poetry doesn’t pay?

If you live in Lincolnshire and you’ve a penchant for poetry, then why not give it a go? (Actually, you don’t have to even live in the county but you do have to have ‘obvious connections with Lincolnshire or a passionate reason for applying.’)

If you can’t apply for this position, it’s still worth checking whether there’s an opportunity to become a Poet Laureate in your area. (And if there isn’t – why not suggest it to your local literary festival or arts centre?)

It’s notoriously difficult to make your mark in poetry but becoming a Regional Poet Laureate – even if it’s one of the ‘unpaid’ ones – can open the door to all kinds of exciting literary-related activities. It’s also a great confidence-booster and looks fabulous on your writer’s CV.

Birmingham claims to have started the trend in the UK for Regional Poet Laureates when it appointed its first in 1996 and there has been a Poet Laureate – and more recently, a ‘Young Laureate’ – for the city ever since.

Other towns/areas that reputedly have Poet Laureates, include: Derbyshire, Chesterfield, Cheshire, Edinburgh Peterborough, Oxford, Bradford, Canterbury, Gloucestershire, Peak District, Harrow and Pinner, South Cumbria, Stirling.

If you know of any others, please let me know! And if you live in Lincolnshire, what are you waiting for….?

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7 Responses to Wanted: Lincolnshire Poet Laureate

  1. Rachel says:

    Just read Return of the Potato King in WWFS, I’m a bit behind in my reading. I loved your story, especially how you structured it. One of those stories that I’m still thinking about after I put it down. Then it twigged that the writer was of that lovely blog I’ve just started reading so I thought I’d say thanks.

  2. Rachel, thank you, that’s really kind of you – I’m glad you enjoyed it. It was one of those stories I’d been toying around with for a couple of years and yes, it was the structure that was the tricky bit in lots of ways! Originally I chickened out of making the Potato King the father of Sally but my writing buddy thought the ending was weak and she was right, of course, so I changed it and that made all the difference. If you haven’t got one, I can recommend getting a Buddy!

  3. Lunar Hine says:

    Buddies, local Laureates, you’re full of inspiration today. Will consider both.
    Thank you.

  4. Matthew McCourt says:

    I am very interested in applying for the status of ‘The Lincolnshire Poet Laureat’ I write poems all the time, concerning modern events, things that are happening in the media, some are very deep, some are funny, I use a broad spectrum of writing, I have 2 books published, the 1st book was called the ‘Hooligan Poet’ the 2nd book was called ‘F.U.B.A.R. POETRY, both books can be found on google and other various websites.
    I would never imagine applying for anything of this calibre, but what caught my eye was the part were you say you want to reach out tot the youth of today, having already had a response to that from friends in Essex, Manchester, Sheffield and various other places.

    I look forward to your reply, cheers Matty McCourt

  5. Jane Air says:

    Do you know what was required for submissions ?
    Have missed the deadline.

    • Jane

      Sorry you missed the deadline. I don’t have the details, I’m afraid – you had to email: David Lambert – cultural solutions – david@culturalsolutions.co.uk for more info. Interviews are on 1st March. Why don’t you email David anyway and see if you can still apply? Worth asking, isn’t it – as long as you can make 1st March!

      Good luck! Helen

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