Rosalind Easton and Sarah Wimbush win Poetry Business Book and Pamphlet Competition

Congratulations to Poetry Society Members Rosalind Easton and Sarah Wimbush, who join Jill Penny and Wendy Pratt as the winners of this year’s Poetry Business International Book & Pamphlet Competition, judged by Imtiaz Dharker and Ian McMillan.

Rosalind Easton wins for her collection Black Mascara (Waterproof).

Black Mascara (Waterproof) is full of wicked invention, retelling the story of a road crash love affair through the muscular language of the racing bike and the Campagnolo Super Record groupset. Catching sight of a former lover ‘makes my iPhone flicker/ with the ghost of a Nokia brick’. All kinds of inanimate things come alive enthusiastically in these poems: the stiletto heel, the music stand, the microphone, a wand with no spells, making every poem a delightful surprise. — Imtiaz Dharker

Rosalind grew up in Salisbury and now lives in South East London, where she works as an English teacher. After a first degree at Exeter University, she spent several years as a dance teacher before completing her PGCE at Bristol and MA at Goldsmiths. She is currently working on her PhD thesis on Sarah Waters. Black Mascara (Waterproof) will be her first published work.

Sarah Wimbush wins for her collection The Last Dinosaur in Doncaster.

I felt drawn to these poems partly because I know the area the poet is writing about; places like Highfields, Brodsworth Hall, Bentley. I guess this meant that I could sniff out any linguistic and cultural wrong notes but there were none. The writing felt local and universal like much good writing does and the phrasing captured the power and majesty of the way the people of that part of Doncaster speak. It felt like the poet was saying new things about old subjects like The Miners’ Strike and growing up, and there was a powerful anger in the poems that didn’t overwhelm them but fuelled their articulacy. — Ian McMillan

Sarah comes from Doncaster and currently lives in Leeds. After winning the Yorkshire Post Short Story Competition in 2011 she began writing poetry with poems appearing in Brittle Star, The Interpreter’s House, The North and Stand. She was awarded first prize in the Red Shed and the Mslexia Poetry Competitions 2016, and second prize in the 2019 Ledbury Poetry Competition. In 2019 her entry won the Mslexia/PBS Poetry Pamphlet Competition and she received a Northern Writers’ Award. Her debut pamphlet Bloodlines (Seren, 2020) explores her Traveller heritage.

Poems by all four winners of the 2020 International Book & Pamphlet Competition will feature in the forthcoming issue of The North magazine, issue 65, which is out this Winter. A Book & Pamphlet winners reading will he held at The Wordsworth Trust in Grasmere in spring 2021, and the four winning pamphlets will be published in February 2021. The 2021 International Book & Pamphlet Competition will open for entries on 1 October 2020. 

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9 June 2020