A new poetry magazine for showcasing poems and poets with a connection to the town of Paisley has been founded by a local creative writer – with the help of Renfrewshire Council funding.
Paisley Poems is the brainchild of 22-year-old Hannah Wilson, whose own work has been published regularly since she was just 13 after winning a national newspaper-sponsored short story writing competition. Since then, her work has been accepted for publication in various places, including Paris-based Belleville Park Pages and The James Joyce Quarterly.
She has now been given a £920 grant from Renfrewshire Council’s Culture, Heritage, and Events Fund – created to support Paisley’s bid for UK City of Culture 2021 by
- raising ambition
- getting people involved in culture
- unlocking the area’s creative potential
- building the capacity of the local creative scene.
Hannah said: “Paisley has a rich history of poetry, stretching back to the weaver poets and beyond, but until now there has been no local forum for Paisley’s poetry to be put on the world stage.
“This is a great opportunity for local writers to get some of their work published. Even if you’ve never written any poetry before, I’d encourage anyone to give it a go – we’re looking to get as wide a range of writers involved as possible.
“The City of Culture bid has already done a huge amount for the town – I think it’s great that the Council is supporting projects in all areas of the arts.”
Hannah is aiming for Paisley Poems to follow a minimalist model based on magazines in Europe such as Belleville Park Pages – which publishes poetry, fiction and short essays by contemporary writers – and the Dublin-based online literary journal, Bohemyth.
The magazine – which will be sold both online and in local shops – is now looking for budding poets to submit their work from Monday 21 November until 31 January.
The best poems will then be featured in the magazine’s first edition, scheduled for publication in spring 2017. Full details and submission guidelines can be found at www.paisleypoems.scot.
Jean Cameron, Project Director for Paisley 2021, said: “Building on the history of our weaver poets, recent interest in poetry within Paisley has been highlighted by the popular Poetry Slam which featured as part of the Sma’ Shot Day Celebrations for the past two years.
“I’m delighted that the Council is supporting Hannah and Paisley Poems to provide a local platform for new and emerging writers as it is a novel way to reflect Paisley’s wonderful heritage.”