Publishing

Maytree 37 – cover reveal

We’re are very excited to reveal our cover for Maytree 37 as, what turns out to be a first for our press, we have been able to combine the author’s own artwork within the design.

The Storm in the Piano by Christopher James features poems inspired by history and music; peacocks and swimming pools, and are peopled by the famous, the tragic and obscure. From Charles Blondin teetering on a high wire strung around the Earth, to Buddy Holly being blasted from a basement in Damascus, they cross borders of space and time. Whether it’s Picasso wing walking on a French biplane, or the Warden of Pluto patiently waiting to be relieved, the poems all explore our potential and what it means to lead a good life. 

Christopher James is a first prize winner of the National Poetry Competition (2008) the Ledbury, Oxford Brooks and Bridport prizes. He is also a recipient of an Eric Gregory Award from the Society of Authors. He has published several collections, including Farewell to the Earth (Arc, 2011), and The Fool (Templar, 2014). He has also published three Sherlock Holmes novels, including The Adventure of the Ruby Elephants (MX, 2015). He lives in Suffolk with his family, folding bicycle and ukulele.

The cover features Christopher’s cut-up, The house of poet Stephen Spender at 15 Loudoun Road, St. John’s Wood, London.

Christopher describes the inspiration for his artwork as follows:

In 2020, inspired in equal part by Matisse and Peter Blake, I started creating paper cut-up collages – first of still life (especially instruments and fruit) then architecture and landscapes. I typically work to A3 size, but have gone as large as a metre square, and as small as A4. I cut up the pieces, as if assembling my own jigsaw. Once I’ve got everything in the right place, I take a photo to make a note of the positioning. Only then do I start the painstaking process of sticking things down. Pritt Stick is my glue of choice, as it gives you about five seconds’ grace, when you can reposition things if they’re not quite right. One of my biggest projects has been a sequence of 20 ‘houses of the poets.’ I started with Dove Cottage, home of Dorothy and William Wordsworth and the logical next move was Coleridge’s rather grander residence at Greta Hall. Keats’ House in Hampstead followed, as did John Betjeman’s flat in Cloth Fair, London, and the Bronte parsonage.  At the same time, I reread their poetry. The process is totally immersive and takes you very close to the spirit of the poet and their work. Working for half an hour on a window Sylvia Plath might have leant out of, takes you uniquely close. I enjoy exploring different styles of architecture; the effect of different lights and times of day — from Pablo Neruda’s surrealist self-designed house in Chile to Edward Thomas’ very ordinary cottage in Surrey. I find my artwork the perfect companion (and antidote) to writing poetry. As someone once said: ‘you can’t write poems all the time.’ 

And here’s a link to Christopher’s online gallery: Houses of the poets – The Friday Poem

The Storm in the Piano will be officially released on the 17 June 2022 and we can’t wait!

Don’t forget that it’s not too late for a chance to see your work published as a special Three Trees Edition later this year – you have until midnight on the 30 April 2022 to enter our Portfolio Award. Enter here Three Trees Portfolio Award | Maytree Press (bigcartel.com)

art, Award, poetry, Publishing

Past, Present, Future

As we mark the third anniversary of our first publication and look forward to the release of our thirty fifth book, we thought it would be a good excuse to celebrate all the wonderful collections we have had the privilege to work on over the past few years and offer you a little treat.

Looking back over our short life its incredible to see some of the amazing poets and artists we’ve worked with and come to know as our friends. It’s been a great adventure watching the Maytree family blossom.

The future looks just as exciting as we welcome our new editor, Roy Marshall to the fold, look forward to finalising work on our 2022 list, and start planning for 2023.

We will have a short open submissions window again in the autumn plus news of our portfolio awards and a new single poem award plus anthology.

Our cover reveals continue to make the news but we thought we would do something a little different for Maytree 36 and give you a sneak preview in our Future section.

Magdalena is the forthcoming collection from Antony Christie and features the image Sunlit Tree by our very own Roy Marshall. Magdalena is scheduled for release on the 20 May 2022 – look out for a more in-depth feature coming soon.

Don’t forget that you can subscribe to our Newsletter on the sign up page here

Our 2022 Portfolio Award closes in just 22 days. Don’t miss out on this opportunity to be part of our story and see your work published later this year – enter now

And finally, all the above previously released titles are available from our online store here and to say thank you for your support we’d like to offer you 10% discount on all book orders for the rest of April. Please use the code April22 at the checkout.

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Roy Marshall joins Maytree

We are delighted to share the news that acclaimed poet and translator, Roy Marshall joins Maytree Press as part of our editorial team. 

Roy will be working with founding editors, Amanda and David to assist with our Portfolio Awards, forthcoming anthology submissions and open submissions.

Roy brings a wealth of experience to the team having published three celebrated poetry collections whilst also working as a creative writing lecturer.

For those who follow Roy on social media, you will also know that he has a keen eye for a good photograph and we are thrilled to be able to use one of Roy’s images on our next cover – look out for the Maytree 36 cover reveal coming soon – it’s simply stunning.

About Roy:

Roy’s first collection, The Sun Bathers (Shoestring Press, 2013) was short-listed for the Michael Murphy award. His second book, The Great Animator appeared in 2017 and a collection of his versions of the poems of the Italian poet Eugenio Montale, After Montale, was published in 2019. Roy’s poems and short stories have appeared widely in magazines and anthologies in the UK and Ireland, as well as featuring in Poems in The Waiting Room, New Zealand. Roy worked as a coronary care nurse for many years, and later, in adult education, most recently as a part time lecturer in creative writing.      

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Maytree 35 – cover reveal

We are very excited to reveal the cover for our thirty fifth publication: Jane Kite’s stunning new collection, The Blanket.

Jane may be familiar to many of our readers as not only is she a wonderful poet but was also part of the successful team behind Half-Moon Books, the publishing house responsible for launching the careers of many fine poets including a few who have since joined the Maytree family.

In The Blanket we find a sequence of poems in which the author tells the story of making a crocheted blanket and the thoughts and memories that the work evoked during it’s completion. Memories are weaved between the crocheted squares like faded photographs of dwellings, relatives, friends and neighbours found in a secret keepsake.

Jane explains that the sequence was written for her daughter in the lead up to her fiftieth birthday. Part memoir, part instruction, part gift, The Blanket is a collection that is instantly accessibly and incredibly enjoyable.

The Blanket was previously performed as a live event as part of the Chapel FM Writing on Air Festival.

The cover features the painting, Moorland Mist by our friend, Kevin Threlfall. We were delighted to be able to work with Kevin again on this collection. Many of the poems deal with time and place and together with Kevin’s expressive brushwork creating a woollen textured landscape, we thought the mystery of the painting worked beautifully for the collection.

The Blanket will be officially released on the 22 April 2022 and Jane will be appearing at a number of launch events during May – more news on this later.

You can find out more about Jane here

A link to Kevin’s online store here

If you’re not already signed up to our newsletter then what are you waiting for – as well as regular updates you’ll also be the first to hear about our publications, submissions and awards. You can sign up with your email here

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Three Trees Portfolio Award 2022

We are very pleased to announce that the second Three Trees Portfolio Award is now open for entries.

Full details can be found on the Three Trees page here: Maytree Press

One poet will have their work published as a special three trees edition and receive 30 free copies plus our standard publishing agreement.

A further fifteen shortlisted poets will receive a 50% voucher for use in our online store.

Once you have read entry details, head on over to our online store where you will find entry details plus a host of wonderful books to explore including last year’s highly recommended winning entry, Last of the Line by Susan Jordan.

Online entries only to threetreesaward@gmail.com. We look forward to reading your work. Good Luck!