Notes from the Margins #42

13 07 2018

I never seem to be able to update this blog in an timely fashion! Grr!

Anyway, news.

Polari was fantastic! It was an honour and a pleasure to share the stage with Hillary, VG, Paul and John! And I was super happy to be able to read the long centre poem from Circumference! Here’s a pic of me from the evening:

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In other news, things have been busy. I have two chapbooks, Onslaught and The Brink of Sunlight out for consideration (one with a publisher, the other entered in a competition).

I also recently finished my first short story in a hundred million years. It’s called Envoi and about a gay mental health nurse having to deliver conversion therapy to a gay patient in the 1950’s.

I’ve been writing a lot of new poems. Titles include: 25 Beautiful Homes, Inheritance, Every Time, The Lads, A Poem for Actors and An Avalanche, Interrupted.

I’ve also very recently started putting together my first full-length poetry collection, and you guys, I am super happy with it. It feels like the most book I have ever book-ed.

In other news, I’m still editing Impossible Archetype (currently open for submissions until 1st Aug) and this issue (#4) is going to be huge – we’ve had so many wonderful, wonderful submissions. Can’t wait to put it altogether.

Finally, Circumference will be out in just a few weeks! You can order a copy here (please go do so!)

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Notes from the Margins #41

30 04 2018

Even more big news:

I’M READING AT ILF DUBLIN! I was ASKED TO! I’m reading on Paul Burston’s Polari evening – a queer literary salon that I’ve always wanted to go to, never mind read at!

Joining me are Hillary McCollum, VG Lee, and JOHN FREAKING BOYNE! I have no words and I am so goddamn excited.

polari

You can book tickets to come see me here.

Also, did I mention that I’m in a festival with Chiamanda Ngozi Adiche, Jamie O’Neill, Roddy Doyle, Ruby Wax, Jennifer Johnston, Michael Ondaatjie, and NEIL FREAKING GAIMAN. (holy hell, I am in excellent company!!)

In other news, I’ve been plugging the hell out of Circumference. My publisher sent me these postcards – so if you get some mail, it’s probably some of these!


Pre-orders for Circumference are still open until May 25th, so if you’re planning to order it, please consider pre-ordering it from the publisher here as it really really helps the book and its print run.

Finally, one of my favourite poems A Life in Pictures is out TODAY in Poetry Ireland Review #124. It’ll be working its way out into the world over the week, and I should get my copy tomorrow. So happy!





Notes from the Margins #40

14 04 2018

So, news doesn’t come any bigger than this.

My first chapbook, Circumferencehas been accepted by Finishing Line Press. Due for publication in July, it is currently up for pre-order!

Title Text

OHMYGOD!

So yes, I haven’t updated this in a while but seriously news doesn’t get more exciting! After years of working on the full-length, and then the chap, it’s now ready for the world, and I cannot wait.

So, what’s it about? Well, it’s about a character called Tommy Martin and his teenage years where he grew up gay, and in love with a boy called Mike, in the (real) small town of Pepperell, Massachusetts, and how as a grown man nearly eighteen years later, he returns upon hearing of the death of his father.

And look at the utter gorgeousness of the cover:

Circumference - Final Without Bleed

This is literally the most beautiful book cover I have ever seen. Thank you so much to Fionn Scott for modelling, to Roscosphotography for the photo, and for Inkspiral Design for giving him map tattoos and making the cover look amazing!

The book is now currently up for pre-order, and you can get it direct from the publisher here. They are a small press so they run a pre-order, and essentially, the more pre-orders it gets, the better for the book and the more they print so PLEASE if you are thinking of ordering the book, don’t wait until it’s on Amazon, B&N or Ingram Book Supply (which it will be post-publication), order it now direct and help a poet out.

Oh, and as well as having the best cover in the world, my book has the best blurb in the world – which absolutely made me cry on public transport when I read it – from author and publisher Bryan Borland:

Mark Ward has named this slim volume of powerful poems Circumference, an apt title given the geological boundaries imposed on us by blood and heart: those things we run from; those things we run to. Here is the timeline of a life, not linear but circular, and the places and people loved and lost and sometimes found again. Here is the poetry of, if not redemption, then reckoning. Here is an understanding that coming-of-age is a process that never stops; that we all are coming-of-age no matter at which point on the circle we find ourselves. Ward has chronicled something aching and timeless in this collection: the weight of the legacies we carry, and the pull of the lives we invent for ourselves.”
–Bryan Borland, Author of DIG

In short: I have a book, I am very happy, please pre-order it here.

*does happy dance*





Notes from the Margins #39

27 10 2017

Good god, it’s been a long time since I’ve updated here! Where does the time go!

So, news.

My poem, “Monsters in the Closet” was published in the premiere issue of new journal, SCAB, which you can read here.
Rather fabulously, I’ll have a further poem, “Signal Deterioration” published in their second issue in the new year, which is lovely!

Secondly, my tipping away at the Irish poetry scene seems to be working a little – my poem “The Pit in Your Stomach” will be featured in the next issue of well-regarded Irish journal Skylight47 (that rather fabulously publishes as a newspaper!).

The BIG NEWS however, which I’m delighted to announce, is that my chapbook, Circumference, is a FINALIST in the 2017 ROBIN BECKER CHAPBOOK PRIZE from SEVEN KITCHENS PRESS! *aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa* To be a finalist is just fecking wonderful – I’m thrilled

Results of the winners should be out any day now also! So keep your fingers crossed!





Notes from the Margins #38

27 03 2017

LOTS HAPPENING RIGHT NOW!

Firstly, the first Impossible Archetype is out in the world! Featuring 30 excellent poets – from established names to first timers – Issue 1 is out now and can be read for free here.

Secondly, I have sent off the full-length version of How to Live When Life Subtracts to my favourite publisher. Say a little prayer, do a little sacrifice, drop those cakes, send me those vibes – you get the idea.

Thirdly, remember Circumference (aka. Book 1 of American G.I.)? Well, I’ve cut 40 pages out of it, and honestly, it’s never been better. I’ve rewrote a good bit of it too, and as a chapbook it’s finally the book it’s always meant to be. Have a publisher in mind too, and have been thinking about approaching books two and three with the same format.

Fourthly, my poem Dorsal, a very imagistic poem of mine about horses and gay love and keeping ones head above water will be published sometime soon on Animal Literary Magazine. I’ll post the link in my publications page once it’s out.

Finally, I’m running the 3rd Annual Ballyroan Library World Poetry Day Competition.
Open to Dublin poets only, we are accepting entries until 21st April 2017. Full guidelines here:
ballyroan poetry comp





Notes from the Margins #36

15 12 2016

LOTS of news!

I’ve had three poems published this month (Three! That’s mad!).

Firstly, my friend, and fellow poet, started a new poetry journal
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My poem, Exemplar, is online here, and the rest of the issue features excellent work from some local poets, Alicia Byrne Keane and Raven.

Secondly, I’m delighted to have my poem, Blackbird, featured in Volume 2, Issue 2 of Studies in Arts and Humanities, a new journal based out of DBS that mixes academia and arts.
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My poem is here, and the issue also features some new drama, as well four academic articles.

Finally, I’m delighted to be back in Australia’s premier literary journal, Tincture.
tincture-16
My poem, Local, is featured alongside a whole host of new poetry and stories. You can purchase/subscribe here.

I’ve two more poems forthcoming very soon, and I’ll write a post about them as soon as they’re out, but until then, Happy Christmas!





Notes from the Margins #34

22 05 2016

ROUNDUP:

FIRSTLY, two reviews for Threesome: Him, Him and Me, in which my story, Fancy Dress, as Chris Colby, gets some nice praise.

Review one, from Love Bytes Reviews
“Fancy Dress is the story of three college flat mates who have vaguely referenced attractions to each other, and which remain unacknowledged until one Halloween night…

Ok, and well there isn’t really much more that can be said about this story. It’s pretty much one big smutty sex scene that sees all three roomies get off in the kitchen. I tend to like more story than smut, so kudos to the author for making me love it. I can only assume that it was the author’s skill that carried it off, but to be honest I was too wrapped up in reading the lascivious on page action to pay that much attention to the writing!”

Review two, from Rainbow Gold Reviews
Fancy Dress – Chris Colby – College campus during Halloween. Three roommates, all very different. The narrator, at first, thinks they are all straight. Then he overhears a phone conversation of one of them, and finds out at least one isn’t. But, he has a tendency to say and/or think the wrong thing at all times. Until he dresses up in drag for Halloween. On a dare. Becoming a catalyst. And then everything seems to go right for him:) I enjoyed this one.

SECONDLY, two interviews,
First one is Nathan Burgoine interviewing me on his Sunday Shorts series as Chris Colby about Threesome and other stuff. 
Second one is me as Mark Ward for Matt Bright’s new Queer Lit Q+A series. 

THIRDLY, I shall be on Sunday Shorts as Mark Ward and on the Queer Lit Q+A’s as Chris Colby soon too (yes, I know, it’s a little confusing, but essentially: four interviews with me)

FOURTHLY, work is going apace on the first Chris Colby novel, which currently has the working title of Under Surveillance. It’s planned to be the first of a series of books. I’m about fourteen chapters into it at the moment.

FIFTHLY, I have been sending work out to beat the band, and hopefully I should be hearing back en masse soon. I’ve also been sending out How to Live When Life Subtracts a bit more, so hopefully that will get picked up!