"My education was the liberty I had to read indiscriminately and all the time, with my eyes hanging out" - Dylan Thomas
Several weeks ago I was utterly surprised, but elated to be told by my publisher Legend Press that I have been nominated for the Dylan Thomas Prize, an incredibly prestigious literary prize for young writers whih is run by the University of Wales. I am amazed; I never would have dreamed of placing my work in that league and I am honoured.
During the course of the Dylan Thomas Prize, the listed writers visit educational institutions to discuss literature and to inspire young people, and encourage them in creative writing. This is doubly important as the government continue to close libraries. (Why they are doing this, I will never understand). There is a reason that the Greeks called the librray in Thebes a healing place for the soul.
The calibre of long listed writers is intimidating;I haven't read every nominated novel yet, but I'm working on it.
Dylan Thomas got me through my maths GCSE. We were studying Under Milk Wood in English lit and I used to read it during maths lessons under the table. His use of language was so beautiful, it took me away from the tedium, from the desks and rows, the wooden numbers, the institutional stiffness and the sharp crack of reality.
'It is spring, moonless night in the small town, starless and bible-black, the cobbledstreets silent and the hunched courters'-and-rabbits' wood limping invisible down to the sloeblack, slow, black, crowblack, fishingboat-bobbing sea.....'