Since I last posted here, a lot has changed. Which is to be expected, as that was about 8 months ago, but it's been a more eventful 8 months than most.
Things were going well; I'd found a solution to some of my production problems in the shape of Kate Reynolds, who'd come on board to help me book the tour and apply for Arts Council funding; in October I won the BBC Radio 4 National Poetry Slam which promised to increase my profile and make selling the show easier. And then my dad died.
I won't go into all the messy details, but needless to say for a couple of months I didn't have the time or energy to get much work done. So as I gradually began to resurface I had to make the difficult decision to cancel the Voices of Dissent tour for this year.
This was an eventuality I'd considered before when having problems finding a producer, and I found the prospect unbearably frustrating at the time, but faced with the death of a loved one you become remarkably stoical about such decisions.
It may yet all work out for the best anyway. I still have Kate on board to make the tour happen next year, and hopefully Ric Watts who produced the show previously should be available again after he finishes at Queer Up North in the summer. We have more time to do it properly now, as, at the risk of stating the obvious, it's a lot more complicated to try and organise a theatre tour by bicycle than by regular petrol-power.
I'm also continuing my relationship with Beaford Arts who've been brilliantly understanding and supportive. They'd provisionally booked me some dates in Devon and Cornwall, one of which was too late to back out of so I'm going down to the Burton Museum and Art Gallery in Bideford on the 27th March to perform some new material along a similar theme, with the support of the excellent Byron Vincent. While I'm down there I'm going to take a few days to meet people in the area as part of my research for some new work in response to the biosphere reserve there. That research, and also the concept for my new work, is actually really exciting, and I'll write a separate post about it soon, but if I don't end this one soon I'm never going to get my poems done...