Writing

Vicky is a British/Welsh poet, and sometimes short story writer based in Sheffield, South Yorkshire. Her debut pamphlet If All This Never Happened was a winner of the Fool for Poetry Chapbook Competition and is available from Southword Editions. She also works as a poetry teacher, and a mentor and editor of emerging adult and young poets who have received accolades such as: the New Poets Prize, the Young Northern Writers Award, and Foyle Young Poet of the Year. She’s the editor of four books of poetry and fiction written by emerging young writers, and writes content for creative projects and promotional literature.

Vicky won a Northern Writers Award in 2014 for fiction, and was shortlisted for the Arvon/Jerwood Mentoring Scheme for poetry 2016/17. She was a recent Jerwood/Arvon mentee for poetry (2019/20) working with poet Hannah Lowe.

Northern Writers Awards
Northern Writers Awards 2014

Publications:
The Rialto, Magma, Atlanta Review, The Interpreter’s House, Poetry Wales, Butcher’s Dog, Under the Radar, The North, And Other Poems, Matter, Brittle Star, Write Where We Are Now project (Carol Ann Duffy/MMU), Slim Volume, Pieces of Me, Wild Poetry, Silver Birch Press, Café Writers Magazine, Ink, Sweat and Tears, Prole, and anthologised in Verse Matters (Valley Press 2017), Not in the Plan Vol4 (Carers UK 2017), Mancunian Ways (Fly on the Wall Press 2020), Poems about Love (Fragmented Voices 2020), The Untangling (Arvon 2020) Yorkshire Anthology (Green Teeth Press 2021/22)

Writing Teaching/Facilitation & Mentoring  – bodies include:

  • Hive Young Writers Network
  • Arvon
  • The Poetry Society
  • NHS Foundation Trust
  • Apples & Snakes
  • Off the Shelf Festival of Words
  • Wakefield Literature Festival
  • Sheffield Hallam University
  • University of York
  • Poetry Wales
  • The Writing Squad
  • In partnership with The Poetry Business

Writing Accolades, Awards & Happenings:

  • 2nd place in the Munster Literature Centre’s Fool for Poetry International Chapbook Competition 2021
  • Shortlist Wolves Lit Festival Poetry Competition 20/21
  • Contributing Editor – Poetry Wales Jan to June 2021
  • Shortlisted in the Magma Pamphlet Competition judged by Mary Jean Chan 2020
  • First Place in the Aurora Poetry Prize 2020
  • Arvon/Jerwood Mentorship for poetry working with Hannah Lowe 2019/20
  • Runner-up in the Mother’s Milk Poetry Prize 19/20
  • Recipient of The Sarah Nulty Creativity Award 2019
  • & a BBC Creative Champion Award 2019 – both in recognition of 20+ years developing young writers and creatives in South Yorkshire
  • First place in the Prole Laureate Poetry Competition 2019
  • Laureate’s Choice Poet for the Barnsley Hear My Voice project chosen by Ian McMillan 2018
  • Highly commended in the Carers UK Poetry Competition 2017
  • Longlisted in the Yorkmix Poetry Competition 2016 & 2017
  • Shortlisted by Mona Arshi for the Arvon/Jerwood Mentoring Scheme 2016/17
  • Winner of the Arvon Northern Writers Award in 2014

Writing-related Commissions (not including projects):

  • Social Care: a poem for future hopes commission working with members of the public via Zoom – ESRC Festival of Social Science 2020, the University of York
  • Yorkshire Day poem: Our Rotherham, working with Rotherham Young Writers (RMBC 2020)
  • Small Pleasures Project poem: Inventory of Small Pleasures (Dina 2020)
  • Women’s suffrage centenary celebration poem: Five Suffragette Ghosts I saw
    on Sheffield Streets
    (Apples & Snakes Jan 2018)
    interview
  • Dyslexic and Loving Words: a 40-minute documentary exploring what it means to be a dyslexic writer, encouraging dyslexics to pursue a love of words through interviews with well-known dyslexic wordsmiths such as Benjamin Zephaniah, and highlighting word-related difficulties
    faced by people with dyslexia. (Off the Shelf Festival of Words 2013)

Editing:

Vicky has collated and edited many publications for creative projects over the years including four anthologies of poetry & short fiction by emerging young writers: Everyday Hymn (2014) Wild Poetry (2017), Everyday Smile (2018), Surfing the Twilight (2019). She is a currently contributing editor at Poetry Wales (2021)

Readings:
Various including: Cork Poetry Festival, Poetry Wales, Verse Matters, York Explore, The Shipping Forecast, Apples & Snakes, Harland Works, Off the Shelf Festival of Words, Rotherham Open Mic Performance, Gorilla Open Mic, Dina Sheffield, Writing East Midlands & Words Aloud.

Upcoming Readings:  Harland Works Sheffield, Off the Shelf Festival.

See Facilitation and Projects for more about her work as a writing facilitator and projects relating to writing.

Photo: Interviewing Shonaleigh Cumbers for Dyslexic & Loving Words