Urchin Belle, Jenni Fagan
|Urchin Belle, Jenni Fagan
Edition of 50, Hardcover, 32 pages. Woodblock cover illustration.
Published by Kilmog Press
Urchin Belle is a debut collection that combines a genuine poetic originality with a piercing clarity. This is a voice born out of a life lived on the edges of society. The erotic and mundane collide with the surreal and extreme to produce a voice at once beguiling, shocking and entirely unapologetic. The stories of those living within and outside the system recur alongside the kind of raw erotic base need that leaves the reader wanting more.
About the author:
Jenni Fagan is a poet, playwright and novelist. She represented Scotland as a young playwright and has had plays read at Edinburgh Festival and in Athens. Since her birth in 1977, Fagan has had three legal names, moved forty times, travelled, and played in bands.Urchin Belle is her first poetry collection to be published (available in the UK from Blackheath books). Jenni was recently awarded funding by Dewar Arts Awards to write for three years and gain a degree. She lives in London with her two cats and is completing her fiction novelThe Panopticon.
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Urchin Belle is out now in New Zealand. It can be purchased from Kilmog Press for $45.00 plus $10.00 for international postage. It is an extremely limited edition and is currently on sale in bookshops and galleries in Auckland.
Urchin Belle has began to have its own life that is nothing to do with me in a way and I like that. I think about how some French philosopher wrote that the breakers of automatons would be people who exist on a periphery that no authority can subjugate. I don’t know about me personally now, but I know the people in Urchin Belle fitted that description to extremes. A few people I love who are in there were some of the best friends I have known and most of us didn’t make it. We all thought we were forever once. I was lucky to know them when I did. For me personally, that is part of what makes this collection the antithesis of commodity. It’s too personal to parade. It is a collection I have at times found difficult to read from, especially later, when drunk, thinking about why it is I am standing doing poems that are a bit absent in the old, crowd pleasing, heart warming, funny funny vein that a lot of poets go for? I guess this book was just never about that, it’s for those who never were, for the dreamers, for the closet poetry readers of this world, it is for all the Urchin Belles of ever, and it is for anyone who ever got the ugly beauty, stood outside and looked in.
I have always abhorred style over content in words and music and stuff. Thanks to Dean at Kilmog Press and Geraint at Blackheath who first published it in the UK, Urchin Belle has style to match its content. I salute it on its way. I like that it is going places I have never been, long may it continue to do so.
Thanks to anyone who bought the sold out UK print on Blackheath books. To purchase a copy from Kilmog please contact Dean on email@example.com
My first published collection Urchin Belle came out last summer on BlackheathBooks. The run had three editions in red, grey and gold which sold out in a few months. I got some really nice responses to it, a favourite being a guy who bought it and carries it around to dip into whenever, kind of like a poetry Ipod he reckons. I liked that. I did some readings over the summer with it including Edinburgh Festival at Wordpower Booskhop. I read alongside two great writers, Kevin Williamson and Darran Anderson. Darran’s collection Tesla’s Ghost came out recently on Blackheath and is a great read, one I highly recommend. I will be doing another collection with Blackheath books this summer for my new collection The Dead Queen of Bohemia.