Over my five years teaching at Chichester University, its been a pleasure to get involved in West Sussex literary events, including the annual Poetry & Jazz cafe and the Havant Literary Festival, where I will be appearing again this autumn. Poetry audiences in the region, I’ve discovered, have been keen, Green and open to a wide range of verse from Hardy to performance poetry.   It was a treat, then, to be asked to bring my fiction to the Festival of Chichester this month. I’ll be reading from Astra (Jo Fletcher Books, 2014), my new science fantasy novel about a young warrior heroine coming of age in a post fossil fuel world. I will also take questions about the book, my research and my first science fiction novel, Seoul Survivors (Jo Fletcher Books, 2013). If you’re in the neighbourhood, please do come along. Waterstones Chichester // Monday July 7th 6pm…

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With Amazon now placing even greater pressure on publishers to relinquish control of their own products, just how well the book industry will adapt to the digital media revolution remains an open question. One common prediction, of course, is that books will never become extinct, but rather rarer and more beautiful. While the mass market paperback has yet to evidence such an exotic transformation, the artist’s book may yet be rising to the challenge. Though arguably avant-garde – the crafted interplay of text and material object treating the book itself as a form to be explored, its possibilities extended – the artist’s book is also as democratic as Lulu, often placing the writer at the centre of production and distribution. Over the last several years Lancaster-based poet Sarah Hymas has been building a fine reputation as a maker and purveyor of limited edition poetry art-pamphlets, most recently Lune, runner-up Best…

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I have been wondering about Green politics in Ukraine: as all over the world, it seems that the more energy self-sufficient a country is, the better it will be able to resist dependency on any foreign power. My correspondent in Lviv, political analyst Lyuddmyla Pavlyuk, answered my questions, and with her permission I share her letter here. Green Voices in Ukraine: a Letter from Lyuddmyla Pavlyuk Green voices in Ukraine are individual than rather than party-related. The official structures of the green movement are not really popular. For example, the Green party of Ukraine had parliamentary representation only until 2002. The reason is very simple: Ukrainian oligarchs wanted to use the party’s brand to get to parliament, and people felt that the party was not really independent and concerned with the environment. So, if ecological problems appear at the nationwide or local level, people create problem-oriented groups and look for…

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