Arvon appoints Long as first virtual writer in residence

Arvon appoints Long as first virtual writer in residence

Creative writing charity Arvon has appointed Rachel Long as its first virtual writer in residence for its online programme, Arvon at Home.

Long is a poet whose debut collection, My Darling from the Lions (Picador), was shortlisted for the Forward Prize for Best First Collection, the Costa Book Award, the Rathbones Folio Prize and the Jhalak Prize. She is the founder of Octavia Poetry Collective for women of colour, housed at the Southbank Centre in London. 

Speaking about the new season of online events, which launched today (26th October), Long said: “It has been my great pleasure to programme a suite of spring courses, masterclasses, readings and conversations on themes close to my heart and by writers I admire hugely. Each of these writers changed the way I read, write, commune with and process the world—from deepening the ways to communicate the often impossibly complex feelings of love, sex and shame, to how to uplift young people through writing, sport and community. Each one of the writers here are innovators, opening up new ways of being and of writing. I am proud of this programme, grateful to Arvon for inviting me to curate it, and excited for how each of these writer’s extraordinary offerings will affect the yet unwritten.”

Eliza Squire, co-director of Arvon at Home, added: “Rachel is bringing a star-studded selection of authors through Arvon’s virtual doors, many of whom will be teaching for Arvon for the first time. American poetry heavyweight Kim Addonizio will be teaching a five-day writing week alongside Forward Prize winner Caroline Bird, and Rachel herself will be teaching a 'Poetry: On Shame' weekend course with Richard Scott.

"There will be a masterclass with Assembly novelist Natasha Brown [Hamish Hamilton] and poet Jack Underwood will share poems from his latest collection A Year in the New Life [Faber] during a live guest reading and Q&A. We are also excited to announce a workshop aimed at eight to 12-year-olds with Carl Anka, football journalist and co-author of Marcus Rashford’s book You are a Champion [Macmillan Children's Books]. The season will close with an event that will feature Rachel pouring a glass of wine transatlantically with fellow poet Morgan Parker, as they discuss their influences, the perils of writing about love, sex and dating, and the role and risk of writing The Ex.”