All items: encounters with writers

Fifty years after taking part in his first poetry reading as a schoolboy, Brian McCabe reflects on what reading his work aloud means to him, and how communicating directly with an audience in this way has helped to shape his writing.

In ‘My Hero', we talk to a number of RLF writers about their personal heroes, and how those heroes have had an impact on their lives and their writing.

You were a journalist, an engineer and a physicist. Space is still exciting and you wouldn't believe some of the discoveries scientists have made. But sadly, aliens still haven't been in touch yet.
I went back to my hotel room, leafed through the mound of tattered pages on the desk, and wished with all my heart that I could be working on something very, very simple.
Listening to the radio as a child sparked Martin Sketchley’s lifelong love of the medium, and inspired his early writing of radio drama.
You have to be prepared for weeks of footnote-tag, invest heavily in clue following and set off for distant records offices and idiosyncratic archives without necessarily knowing you'll get anywhere useful at all.
Between them, the writers in my two groups have have won prizes and published extensively, but what is infinitely engaging is leaning in to listen to someone reading a new poem.
Their care and attention, setting words on paper, makes you feel that thrill of recognition; you know with certainty that what they write is true, and you want to do what they do.