National Library of Scotland pamphlet poetry finalists announced
The National Library of Scotland has announced the shortlist for the 2014 Callum Macdonald Memorial Award.
The award recognises outstanding examples of pamphlet poetry publishing with a connection to Scotland or Scottish culture.
The shortlist is as follows:
- Cromarty Arts Trust for 'Ballast Flint' by Richie McCaffery
- Donut Press for 'Murder Bear' by W N Herbert
- Hattericks House for 'weaver of grass' by Chrys Salt
- Mary Thomson for 'East End' by Mary Thomson
- Perjink Press for 'The angel and the aipple', by Mary Johnston
- The Shed Press for 'One old onion and other poems' by Jenny Elliott.
The winner and runner-up will be announced at a ceremony at the National Library of Scotland on 15 May, when all the entries will also be displayed. The publisher of the winning pamphlet will be presented with a cheque for £800 and will hold the Callum Macdonald Quaich for 12 months.
The author of the winning pamphlet will also be eligible for a separate prize of a two week residency as the Michael Marks Poet in Residence Harvard University's Center for Hellenic Studies in Greece in July. The NLS award is funded by the Michael Marks Charitable Trust, in memory of Scottish literary publisher and printer Callum Macdonald MBE, and is administered in association with his widow, Tessa Ransford OBE.
Lesley Duncan, Poetry Editor of 'The Herald', who chaired the judging panel, said: 'There's a high "wow" factor about this year's short list, from sophisticated design and typography to excellent poetry ranging in theme from a Scots perspective on the biblical Eden to the fantastical doings of a murderous bear; from the austere northern heritage of Cromarty to the warm world of Glasgow's East End. On this showing, creativity in Scotland is not just alive and well but positively burgeoning.'
The award aims to encourage the preservation of printed material of this kind and all entries submitted are taken into the collections of the National Library of Scotland. As a result the Library currently holds nearly 400 of the finest contemporary Scottish pamphlets in its collections.
The award was won last year by Stewed Rhubarb Press, whose editor, James T Harding, joined this year’s judging panel. He said: 'It was fascinating to see how wildly different the pamphlets entered were, many of which I wouldn't have encountered if it wasn't for the award bringing them together in one place. I would strongly recommend anyone interested in running their own press or self-publishing poetry spend some time with the Callum Macdonald archive, which every year is swelling with some really wonderful examples of the form.'
7 May 2014