Still on the programme with Spread the Word. The Complete Works is an innovative national development programme for advanced Black and Asian poets in the UK. Designed to address some of the problems of lack of diversity in publishing, it offers 10 poets a two year package of support. This includes mentoring, a series of seminars and two visits to Arvon.
The programme is now in Year 2 and heading towards a final showcase and anthology for 2010. The poets on the scheme have already enjoyed a range of successes: Seni Seneviratne was awarded a Winston Churchill Fellowship, Roger Robinson is about to publish his second collection, Rowyda Amin’s manuscript has been accepted for publication by Tall Lighthouse, Nick Makoha’s poetry/film is on the Tate website as part of Tate re-mixed, Malika Booker has had residencies at BAC and in Slovenia and is about to start a one-woman show and Karen McCarthy’s pamphlet was short-listed for the Poetry Book Society award and is currently completing a project called Open Notebooks for Spread the Word.
The support of the tutors on the programme has been incredible and they have all expressed their belief that the programme is of great importance. In the words of Mimi Khalvati, senior poet and founder of the Poetry School: “I think the Complete Works will have an enormous impact. All of the group talented, generous, enthusiastic, hardworking willing and open to suggestion. A really gorgeous group with almost a sense of family and strong commmunity both as poets and as people.
Spread the Word is a catalyst for developing writers.