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Reflective Writing Event; October 20th 2015




Are you struggling to write reflectively and find yourself staring blankly at an empty word document?

Not sure what reflective writing actually entails and wish to find out? Or do you just want to improve your reflective vernacular for an upcoming academic piece?

Then make sure you get to this workshop! It will take place at 12pm-1pm, L2.02 in the Teesside Library.
Topics that will be covered include how to write in the reflective style, the process of successfully incorporating academic research into your reflective writing, as well as understanding why written reflection is valuable.




Bear and Butterfly (Middlesbrough Town Hall) 20th October! 12:30pm – 2:15pm

Tickets – £5.50 + booking fees
Group discounts are available for bookings of 25+ for £5 per ticket.  

Please contact the Box Office for details.

 This is a fantastic event for children to get involved in and experience!

Book Signing with local author David McCaffrey (W H SMITH) October 10th!

Can any death be humane?



This is a great opportunity to talk with an experienced author. He wrote the thriller Hellbound, a tale that is both remarkable and thought-provoking, delving into the ethics of capital punishment.

You follow murderer Obadiah Stark and reporter Jack O’Connell, while the former commits his many horrible crimes and the latter doggedly seeks the truth about the blood-thirsty killer (and chases anything in a skirt.)

You also follow Obadiah on his journey after his execution.

The ethical questions surrounding thoughts on justice and the death sentence are raised surprisingly well within in this novel. Hellbound does’t give any overt information regarding the David’s opinion on the death penalty, so you are not swayed into thinking it is “right” or “wrong.” But he does give you the facts (he has a background in criminology). You’re then left to make your own mind up about the main character Obadiah Stark .

It’s certainly not a mindless, horror gore-fest with no substance.

So if you’re a fan of provocative, psychologically thrilling stories, read the book and meet the man himself!

If you do go to the signing, you will also get a signed copy of Hellbound from the author himself.

‘Go Set a Watchman’: The Long-Awaited Sequel to Harper Lee’s Pulitzer Prize Winner ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’


The literary world shared a collective gasp at the news that, 55 years after the publication of Harper Lee’s only novel, To Kill A Mockingbird, she intends to publish a sequel – Go Set A Watchman.  Read more…

The Electric Kool-Aid Cabaret


The last Kool-Aid Cabaret was a heady brew of stimulation, inspiration and reflection. Not often do you see the funky, the political and the poetic all weaved together with an eclectic blend of original music and comedy. No mumbling fops in velvet capes here, with Bob Beagrie and Andy Willoughby running the show and throwing us tasty morsels from their modern epic, ‘Sampo’.

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Local poet Carmen Thompson  was like a siren on the stage, her poetry filled with sex, wit and myth.

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Dizzylez from Avignon recorded his voice live into a looper to build up layers of sound (the sea, breakbeats, hi-hats, mouth trombone) before rapping out poetry over the top.

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Kayo Chingonyi gave us poems inspired by the house scene, back in the days of Larry Levan, such as ‘The Colour of James Brown’s Scream‘.

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In amongst all this we were treated to other poems about life, death, sex and night furies; protest songs, didgeridoos, a bluesy version of Billy Gene; and comedy sketches (including a valiant attempt to explain politics through the medium of a banana).

The last of the Teesside Cabarets connected to The Intercity Flow Project brings together poets from Denmark, London and Teesside (Claus Ankersen and Maja Petrea Fox, Jacob Sam-La Rose and Rachel Long, Jo Colley and Serena Rana-Rahman).

Plus live music from The Electric Kool-Aid Trio, the incredible Curse Pie & The Amplifier, songwriter slot from James Senior, comedy sketches and other unexpected intrigues. Don’t miss it!

The Electric Kool-Aid Cabaret, 22nd April, 7.30pm at Tuned In! Majuba Road, TS10 5BJ Redcar. £4/£5 on the door (free for anyone 19 years or under, discount for members of the Teesside Literary Society)

Photographs @ Kev Howard, used by kind permission.

Vogue Talent Contest 2015

Do you have an eye for fashion and a passion for journalism? Do you dream of a career in the bustle and glamour of glossy magazines?

Then Vogue’s 2015 Talent Contest is your calling. Read more…

Still got a novel in you? Bestselling authors such as Mary Wesley show you it’s never too late.

For any creative writer, the daunting prospect of a more involved piece of prose can be off-putting before you even begin.

Of course, some of the most simple advice novelists can give to their aspiring writers is this: just write.

Read more…

Sampo reviews

For those out there who are debating whether to view Sampo: Heading Further North, here are some reviews given by fellow poets and literature enthusiasts.


“Beagrie and Willoughby hot-wire their original Finnish source material and drive it dangerously and exhilaratingly into the Northern Europe of the 21st century. The ride is breath-taking.”

Dr Paul Hardwick–   Poet and Senior Lecturer in Medieval Literature

“An exceptional eye-opening piece of work that updates Kalevala and forms astonishing links between the North-East of England and ancient Finnish myths. All of a sudden the shaman Vainämöinen, his young bride Aino, and all the other brave yet vulnerable heroes of my national epic seem very current and timely. A funny, witty, sensitive work – written by two poets, with a method unknown to me.”

Riina Katajavuori , – Finnish poet and novelist

“Sampo: Heading further North is an injection of much needed B12 into contemporary poetry. It takes its readers on a mythical journey to modern Teesside and ancient Finland. It is a dive into the unknown, into a gaping dark hole in the arctic ice.”

Kalle Niinikangas – Finnish poet, translator and publisher

Poem by Kalle Niinikangas, performed with Andy Willoughby, Masi Hukari, Kev Howard and Anton Flint at The Barker Theatre, November 2012.

‘What will your verse be?’


Black Light Engine Room Live Literature Evening

Black Light Engine Room

Black Light Engine Room

The latest in this popular live literature evening will take place on Saturday 25 January  at The Westgarth Social Club, Southfield Road, Middlesbrough.

Teesside University Creative Writing students will be reading!

Open Mic. 7.30pm start.