Jon McGregor writes novels and short stories. His recent books include a short story collection, This Isn’t the Sort of Thing That Happens to Someone Like You, and his third novel, Even the Dogs, which won the IMPAC Dublin Literature Award in 2012. He is a Professor of Creative Writing at the University of Nottingham, where he edits The Letters Page, a literary journal in letters. The Guardian recently named him as one of the Top Ten writers to see live, describing him, faintly, as ‘not the showiest or most showboating of authors.’ Jon lives in Nottingham, and divides his time.
‘Song, Grimsby’, from the collection This Isn’t the Sort of Thing That Happens To Someone Like You:
Chinese restaurants, launderettes, baked-potato vans.
These are a few of my favourite extractor-fans.
Joan Hewitt‘s collection Missing the Eclipse was published by Cinnamon Press in 2008. Her poems have appeared in London Magazine, Magma, Southlight and Mslexia; and in many anthologies, including Double Bill, poems on popular culture( Shoestring Press); The Body and the Book, Writings on Poetry and Sexuality by Rodopi Press; and Not A Muse, women from 100 different countries (Haven Press). She has been placed in many competitions, including the Ledbury; received the Northern Promise Poetry Award from New Writing North ; and is a member of Newcastle’s Northern Poetry workshop, which includes Sean O’Brien, W N Herbert , Jacob Polley, and Kathy Towers. She has performed at Newcastle’s Theatre Royal with the Royal Shakespeare Company and regional poets.
The Colour of Hours Woman’s Hour , Radio 4.
Golden, that hour where it was always afternoon.
The baby upstairs, star-fished in its cot.
A single plate rinsed and shining in the rack.
The teapot warmed. And from the green transistor
ripening in sunshine on the sill, modulated
female voices conveyed a pine table of their own.
Sometimes you closed your eyes, drowsed through
Does Feminism Have a Future? and
The Best Way To Hang Your Husband’s Suit,
while that sentinel of time, the ironing- board,
upright against the wall by a basket of damp shirts,
warned that the hour was never really yours.
It’s not yours now in black-and-white mid- morning.
You catch a snippet in the car. Jenni Murray
trembles on a question as though it’s freshly-formed
and the woman taking Botox for incontinence responds.
You switch off the engine, and the grey indefinite
of podcasts that you might download expands.
So it’s a matter of parity that you want to see
a lot more penises on the small screen?…
After sixty visits, how on earth
did no-one see this child was badly injured?…
Thank you, Prime Minister. And now:
should you ever go without a bra? ”
On-air live from Antarctica, the Commander
of Halley Base Camp VI is used to wintering
in total darkness with twelve men; prises them
from laptops into Red Hut for a Murder game.
“And do those Saturday nights fly by?”
The Commander’s giggle wings across 8,000 miles.