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Europe

books creating dailyconnectionwithnature Europe feature nature Outdoors travel water

Jumping off

April 29, 2021

Sending new words out into the world can feel like jumping off a cliff. You don’t know how it’s going to land, or if people will connect. There’s that lurch in the stomach as your feet recognise thin air, the last-second terror that maybe you should just forget all about it and go hide in bed. And yet we do it don’t we? We scramble up, stride forward; step off. Over and over: crafting the narrative, reshaping the vision, reconfiguring…

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books creating Europe feminism Mental Health poetry

Writing characters I love

April 28, 2021

One of my favourite characters to write in The Madness of Sara Mansfield is Sara’s life-partner, Nneka Adesina. I am in love with Nneka’s brilliance – she has worked her way to the pinnacle of success as a biotech scientist in the sovereign state of Mont Blanc – the world is at her feet, and she knows it.  And yet, beneath the surface of her immensely successful and meticulously shaped Amortal life, difficult questions begin to surface about the true…

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books creating Europe nature Outdoors travel water

On fiction, dystopia and connection to the poetic soul

April 27, 2021

I’ve avoided using the word ‘dystopia’ when talking about the new book because I don’t believe it’s a dystopian novel. It is darkly realist at times and I don’t shy away from shining a bright light of truth on characters and events so that the shadows are revealed.But in addition to this, there’s many beautiful moments of connection, with the land, with other people, and with technology. You just have to be prepared to look. It’s also the first book…

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creating dailyconnectionwithnature Europe feature nature poetry travel

Where the wild lives

April 23, 2021

This poem was gifted to me by the land at San Juan de Gaztelugatxe, northern Spain, over a magical hunters full moon weekend back in October 2019. We parked on the cliff tops then walked and dreamed. A truly magical place in time. This is also the opening poem to the new novel The Madness of Sara Mansfield as I felt directed by the land to stitch as much of her into the book as posible.  The Madness of Sara…

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Cymru Europe politics Wales

In need of a rant

April 22, 2021

The Senedd elections are next month and I’ve never felt so disillusioned with the entire political process. Democracy feels like fake news. Voting these days feels very much focussed on divisions instead of a beautiful cocreated future of inclusivity. Emerging from Covid, many of us are thinking about how we can actively create the world we want to live in instead of accepting what we’ve been given, but how does that translate in real life?Did you know that British nationals…

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books creating Europe politics travel

An international book

April 21, 2021

My work has always been political. How can an artist create and not speak to the wider context of community or land?  One of the (many) reasons we moved into the van was in protest at Britain’s Brexit vote. We still very much feel European, and in times like these I believe we should be opening our borders to help those in need, not locking ourselves away to fight it out on this tiny island.  I wanted The MthR Trilogy…

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books creating Cymraeg dailyconnectionwithnature Europe nature poetry

On Welsh myth and Cretian landscapes

April 13, 2021

One of the elements of the new novel, The Madness of Sara Mansfield, that’s important to me is the nature writing. Although this sci-fi trilogy nods towards dystopia, there’s also hope, and for me, the potential for new dreams always flows from nature.After wars, or in derelict places, wild plants grow, reclaiming the space, rejoicing in their fecundity. Nature knows how to heal the scars of our making. I think this is why I find books like McCarthy’s The Road…

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Europe feature slowlivingactivism vanlife

Making everybody welcome

April 6, 2021

Since we began travelling across Europe we’ve become much more aware of how hard British communities work to keep travellers out. Height restriction barriers, No Overnight Parking signs, even Flintshire’s recycling centres now demand proof that you have an address in Flintshire before they’ll let you take your rubbish and recycling there – what on Earth do they think people will do with it if refused entry? They can’t eat it. So you’ll end up with roadside dumps and another…

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Europe family feature feminism politics slowlivingactivism

On family and connection

March 26, 2021

We’ve been incredibly lucky during this past lockdown year. The first half locked into Portugal then Switzerland, and even this winter in Cymru we’ve managed to park with family. There’s a certain amount of life that is shaped by our attitude, and positive thinking makes such a difference when, for example, getting through winter in a tiny home set up to travel but aren’t able to do so. Still, there’s a huge privilege in even being able to think positively.…

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Europe feature feminism Mental Health

When I need to be around big things so I can ignore the small…

November 13, 2020

I had a bit of a weird trigger this morning. Usually if I wake early I lie in bed writing a blog or ideas for a poem on my phone as it’s not fun getting up too early in a van when it’s cold, dark and raining outside.Yesterday I posted a lovely chat with Liset who also spends time creating on the road and I was feeling really happy with the way the OUTSIDER blog is evolving. I also sent…

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