Music, Poetry and Creative Learning

The Festival of Creative Learning is just about to kick off and we are bouncing with excitement as we have over 130 extraordinary events taking place across the University. I will be going to a witchcraft spell zine creating workshop, AI film screenings, an introduction to contemporary circus, an event exploring the refugee crisis throughContinue reading “Music, Poetry and Creative Learning”

EIBF Live Poetry Lab

I had such fun at the Edinburgh International Book Festival today, writing in a tent on George Square for three hours as part of the Live Poetry Lab. A number of nice folks dropped in to share their festival memories with me, and we had intriguing conversations about the history and politics of the festivalsContinue reading “EIBF Live Poetry Lab”

August in Edinburgh

It’s August in Edinburgh! There’s so much that is marvellous on offer, how can one choose? I’m already mourning my missing of the PJ Harvey gig, which I hear was life changing. Still to come: a few readings which it would be brilliant to see you at… I have the pleasure of reading at theContinue reading “August in Edinburgh”

Drown Not Wee Blossom

Happy Thursday! Here in Edinburgh we’re swimming through the streets thanks to this day of rain, but I’m appreciating it because someone was just telling me that in Ibiza there are no rivers anymore because there is no rainfall… is that true? Anyway, it makes me feel lucky to be in a place where thereContinue reading “Drown Not Wee Blossom”

After Economy, London Reading

I’ll be reading from After Economy this Tuesday, 9 May, in London at the Shearsman Reading Series, Swedenborg Hall, 20/21 Bloomsbury Way, London WC1A 2TH. It starts at 7.30pm. I’m very honoured to be reading with Josephine Balmer, Alice Kavounas, and special guest, Yang Lian.   More details are available here and here. Please come along if you’re in town.

The New Life

My dear friend and mentor Robyn Marsack sent me the most exquisite gift the other day. She said it was a present that she had been planning to give me on the evening of my book launch, but thought I might like to be able to wear it on the night… which I very muchContinue reading “The New Life”

A Visit to a Land of Sea and Song: Poetry on North Uist

It was such a delight to spend a few days on North Uist with the poet Pauline Prior-Pitt at the end of March. She kindly invited me to visit her and the writing group she nurtures at the Taigh Chearsabhagh Museum and Arts Centre. Thanks to support from the Scottish Book Trust’s Live Literature Fund, I wasContinue reading “A Visit to a Land of Sea and Song: Poetry on North Uist”

YOU ARE THE FIRE

I’m running a poetry workshop on Monday for some amazing students on the MasterCard Foundation Scholars Program at the University of Edinburgh. We’ll be responding to the work of Upile Chisala, following on from a recent visit she made to read for the students. I’m feeling very inspired by Upile’s fire! Also coming up: VINEBOX I’m super excitedContinue reading “YOU ARE THE FIRE”

AFTER ECONOMY Launch

AFTER ECONOMY a new collection exploring the fine line between abundance and apocalypse Out now! Get your copy here, and book here for the After Economy Edinburgh launch at Talbot Rice Gallery. More details below. It would be lovely to see you there. After Economy | JL Williams Book Launch Talbot Rice Gallery 3 May 2017Continue reading “AFTER ECONOMY Launch”

Festival of Creative Learning

This post went out last week on our blog at the Festival of Creative Learning and I thought I would share it here as well. Hope you enjoy and to see you at a Festival event if you can make it along. It’s just over two months since I started as Projects and Engagement CoordinatorContinue reading “Festival of Creative Learning”

Between poles and tides at Talbot Rice Gallery

For some time now, I have had the pleasure of being one of the TRG3 residents at Talbot Rice Gallery with my dear friend, the artist Catherine Street.  We have had an amazing time responding to recent exhibitions, including Alice Neel: The Subject and Me and the British Art Show 8. I was delighted to haveContinue reading “Between poles and tides at Talbot Rice Gallery”

Flint & Pitch plus 12-Hour Action Group

Hello there! So much has been happening, and is happening… here are details and invitations for you: I finished up at the Scottish Poetry Library in November and will be starting at my new job as Projects and Engagement Coordinator for the Institute for Academic Development at the University of Edinburgh next week – exciting!Continue reading “Flint & Pitch plus 12-Hour Action Group”

Events: Summertime & the Living is…

A little summary of the handful of events I have coming up… would be wonderful to see you at one, some or all if you can make it along. OPUL is performing at Click Clack tomorrow night (Friday 29) at Henry’s Cellar Bar, 7-10pm  Catherine Street and I will be performing a new piece calledContinue reading “Events: Summertime & the Living is…”

A Word in Your Shell-Like

I have not been an actual performer in the Edinburgh Fringe for some time, but I get a chance this year as part of this lovely wee poetry event, which also features my SPL colleague and wonderful poet Georgi Gill.  There is an open mic element to it so please come and join us toContinue reading “A Word in Your Shell-Like”

CLICK CLACK: A little poetry and music…

Kick off the festival season with a little music, more music, and poetry and music. OPUL (the marvellous James Iremonger and me) will be playing some new pieces, showcased thus far only in distant and beautiful Montreal at the Le 17e Festival de la poésie de Montréal. I haven’t had the pleasure of seeing Snibbo yet but IContinue reading “CLICK CLACK: A little poetry and music…”

If a Leaf Falls Press at Good Press

Very excited to be reading at this on 6 August: If a Leaf Falls Press at Good Press Saturday 6th August 2016 3-6pm With readings by… Maria Fusco reading Notes on Comic Face nick-e melville reading slippage/pigsclap twice Sam Riviere reading Cont. and Preferences Mike Saunders reading george clooney will always be handsome: towards a phenomonology ofContinue reading “If a Leaf Falls Press at Good Press”

Poetry, poetry and more poetry!

So much has been happening lately that I have not had time to share.  I will include some links in this post to recent events and excitements. I had this article about borders, passports and writers working abroad in politically-complicated countries published in The Bottle Imp, a wonderful online journal that exists to promote and support theContinue reading “Poetry, poetry and more poetry!”

British Art Show 8

The blog has gone up introducing the project that Catherine Street and I will be doing as writers-in-residence for the Edinburgh leg of this year’s British Art Show.  You can read about our ‘live writing sessions’ here, and find the link where you’ll be able to watch the three live writing sessions from anywhere inContinue reading “British Art Show 8”

ALL SYSTEMS… go

Opening Bracket / Closing Bracket: An Object Lesson in Levitation by JL Williams, performed on 17 February 2016 at Cooper Gallery It was very special to have the opportunity to write and perform the new text Opening Bracket / Closing Bracket: An Object Lesson in Levitation at Cooper Gallery last week, and especially wonderful toContinue reading “ALL SYSTEMS… go”

Drag Queen Poetry: The Library is Open!

I was so honoured to host the recent Drag Queen Poetry event at the Scottish Poetry Library.  When I first heard Iain Morrison reading his new sequence of Drag Queen poems in 2015, I knew they needed to be heard by more people.  Iain’s brilliant friend, poet and artist Jean-François Krebs, came on board and American poetContinue reading “Drag Queen Poetry: The Library is Open!”

TRG3 and BAS8

It’s been, according to our calculations, about four years since the extraordinary artist Catherine Street and I began working together.  We’ve been exploring art, writing and performance and are delighted to have submitted one of the three proposals selected for this year’s TRG3 residencies at Talbot Rice Gallery.  We have also been invited to be writers-in-residence for theContinue reading “TRG3 and BAS8”

Two Minute Manifesto

There’s a delicious collection of minds and hearts – David Greig (new Artistic Director of the Lyceum Theatre!), Zinnie Harris, Tiffany Jenkins, Dominic Hinde and Chrissy Barnacle – all on stage at the Traverse tomorrow night for the newest instalment of Two Minute Manifesto – and me doing a poem or two.  Do join us!Continue reading “Two Minute Manifesto”

Poetry Flashmob in Göttingen and other delights…

It’s been a busy few months!  Check out the links for some text, reviews and recordings.    Recording of Our Real Red Selves book launch at Golden Hare Bookshop here.  The Process of Being piece that Catherine Street and I performed at the Cooper Gallery in Dundee, here.  Review of the Hidden Door 2015 UnforeseenContinue reading “Poetry Flashmob in Göttingen and other delights…”

TALKFEST: CLOSE ENCOUNTERS

Join us if you can, tickets are available here.  It’s such a treat to be part of this! PRESENTED BY PLAYWRIGHTS’ STUDIO, SCOTLAND AS PART OF TALKFEST AT THE TRON CLOSE ENCOUNTERS Closing Time by Kevin P. Gilday; Pirlie Wee Horses by JL Williams Directed by Peter Arnott 22nd April 2015 7.45pm Free but ticketedContinue reading “TALKFEST: CLOSE ENCOUNTERS”

Aye Write! 2015

It’s really a pleasure to be reading at two events at Aye Write! this year. The first will be on 18 April at 6pm.  It’s the pre-launch for ‘Triptych: Our Real Red Selves’ out with Vagabond Voices, with myself, Harry Giles and Marion McCready. This new series is inspired by the beautiful Penguin Modern Poets booksContinue reading “Aye Write! 2015”

SYMPOETRY on film

I feel so happy when I watch this film by Wee Dog Media documenting our SYMPOETRY: SPL Poetry Symposium last November.  Hope you enjoy it too!

“The Writer’s Life” with JL Williams

On 17 February, at the CCA in Glasgow, I will be reading some of my poems and talking about what it’s like to be a poet at this event for the Scottish Writers’ Centre, which is a fabulous organisation that supports writers! Please do join us if you’re in the Wild West that evening, andContinue reading ““The Writer’s Life” with JL Williams”

Burns and Feminism

I had the pleasure of attending the Med-Chi Burns Supper on Friday.  I was there to deliver a ‘Reply to the Toast to the Lassies’ that I hope would make my Wellesley College compatriots proud. The Tools of the Trade anthology is mentioned; I couldn’t resist as I was speaking to a room full ofContinue reading “Burns and Feminism”

Poems and Paintings on Lindisfarne

It has been wonderful working with the very talented artist Rose Strang on these collaborations.  Her paintings are so full of light and mystery, it’s a delight to respond to them poetically.  I recorded the poems and she then made these lovely films.  You can see more of Rose’s work, and find out how toContinue reading “Poems and Paintings on Lindisfarne”

Mirrorball at the CCA

So pleased to be reading alongside two fabulous poets next week at the CCA in Glasgow.  Do join us if you’re free. Mirrorball Date Thursday 30th October 2014 – 7:00pm CCA Clubroom, 350 Sauciehall Street £5 on the door, SMM members free, All ages Paul Farley was born in Liverpool in 1965 and studied at theContinue reading “Mirrorball at the CCA”

Jerwood Opera Writing Programme

Another piece of marvellous news just came along. I have been accepted onto the 2014/2015 Jerwood Opera Writing Programme. For a long time now I have been working with amazing composers and musicians such as James Iremonger to explore how poetry and music can combine to produce new creations, and this feels like the nextContinue reading “Jerwood Opera Writing Programme”

The Wisdom of Stone

Just came across this recording done for the Edinburgh City of Literature ‘enlighten‘ project a couple years ago… funny to realise that I was writing about the life of stones even then (inspired in this case by James Hutton) and then went on to write more on this subject in Locust and Marlin, thanks toContinue reading “The Wisdom of Stone”

Sound and Light

Exciting event coming up in Glasgow next week — Sound and Light : More fusion and fission with music and spoken word. JL Williams & James Iremonger; Mairi Lafferty & Lila Matsumoto; Tim Cooper & Sam Tongue; Alexander Hutchison & Special Guests. Wednesday, 3 September, 8pm, Glasgow City Halls.   More info here. Tickets available here.Continue reading “Sound and Light”