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03/02/2022

Live Literature open to all this Spring in University and Bolton Library & Museums partnership

The University of Bolton’s English and Creative Writing department are proud to again partner with Bolton Library and Museum Services for a new season of exciting live literature events this Spring.

After last year’s successful run of virtual events during lockdown, the Autumn semester saw events return to Bolton Central Library. The series showcased some exciting new literary names, including novelist Sean Gregory’s “bold, gripping and audacious debut” (Benjamin Myers), and memorable script-in-hand performances of two play excerpts from current MA students Nathaniel Bennett and Gemma Burnell.  We were also treated to readings from two exciting younger poets, the award-winning Suzannah Evans, described by the Guardian as “combining serious concerns with strange comedy”, and John Challis, who launched his debut collection The Resurrectionists, praised by Sean O’Brien as a book with a “tender regard for ordinary life in its embrace of both the political and the metaphysical”.

For the first event of this new season on Tuesday 8th February we will be treated to a performance from The Salford Docker, a brilliant new play by Sarah Weston that “tells the tale of the Salford docks, and how neoliberalism eroded its sense of community” (Tribune). Sarah and the cast will be joined by our scriptwriting lecturer Ed Jones for a Q&A following the performance.

Tuesday 8th March will see the launch of our English & Creative Writing lecturer Ben Wilkinson’s second book of poems, Same Difference. The collection follows his popular football-themed debut, Way More Than Luck, which was highly commended in the Forward Prizes for Poetry. Guardian poetry critic Carol Rumens has already described the collection as “colloquial, straight-talking, ‘less deceived’ than Philip Larkin”, and one that “brings a spiky 21st-century realism as well as formal adroitness to the contemporary lyric”. Ben will be joined by two exceptional recent graduates reading from their poems.

The season concludes on Tuesday 5th April with the launch of Okechukwu Nzelu’s hotly anticipated new novel, Here Again Now. The book has already be praised by Brit Bennett as “a beautiful exploration of grief and family”, prompting Derek Owusu to state that “Nzelu is the future of Black British writing”. An unmissable event. Nzelu will be joined by our fiction writing lecturer Valerie O’Riordan for a Q&A following the reading.

Everyone is welcome to join us at Bolton Central Library on Tuesday 8th February at 6pm, for what promises to be a fantastic night of Live Literature to kick-off the season. Entry is free.

Tuesday 8th February: Live Literature
The Salford Docker: a script-in-hand performance of UoB lecturer and playwright Sarah Weston’s new play
6 – 7:30pm @ Bolton Central Library, Le Mans Crescent, BL1 1SE.

Tuesday 8th March: Live Literature
Same Difference: poet and UoB lecturer Ben Wilkinson launches his second book of poems
6 – 7:30pm @ Bolton Central Library, Le Mans Crescent, BL1 1SE.

Tuesday 5th April: Live Literature
Here Again Now: novelist Okechukwu Nzelu reads from his second novel, with a Q&A
6 – 7:30pm @ Bolton Central Library, Le Mans Crescent, BL1 1SE.

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