HarperCollins imprint HQ has signed an “exquisite” second volume of poetry and prose by Charly Cox, who wrote it all on her phone.
Executive publisher Lisa Milton negotiated the deal for HQ with Abigail Bergstrom at Gleam Futures. Validate Me is due to be published on 3rd October.
HQ said the new volume “explores the havoc that the digital hemisphere is playing on our relationships, concentration span and mental health”. The synopsis states: “Written entirely on her phone, this is a look at how a life lived online is both liberating and screwing us all up, through the gaze of one woman on the cusp of absolute digital burnout. Funny, heart-breaking and at times achingly relatable, Charly’s writing has the power to make you feel less alone. “
Cox’s first collection, She Must Be Mad, was published by HQ in July 2018. It was shortlisted for a Books Are My Bag Reader’s Choice Award alongside Pam Ayres, Seamus Heaney and Carol Ann Duffy.
Milton said: “Charly’s poetry is exquisite. Magically interweaving the everyday with the abstract, Charly gives words and clarity to experience and thoughts that most women live but few express. Honest, raw, insightful, fearless, feminist, earth-shatteringly dazzling, Charly and her poetry are changing the landscape for poetry in the 21st century. Everyone at HQ is proud to be publishing this next volume.”
Cox said she was “beyond thrilled” to be working with HQ again. She said: “She Must Be Mad was a piece of punctuation on a very confused and difficult time - I thought perhaps a full stop - but I hope Validate Me can prove to be an ellipsis to more hopeful and honest thinking.”