My main areas of research and teaching are American literature, poetry, and creative writing. I am the author of the collection of prose poems, Up the Creek (Knives Forks and Spoons, 2018); The Little Shed of Various Lamps (Very Small Kitchen, 2013), a hybrid work of poetry, prose and essay on the subject of mourning; and Relative Strangeness: Reading Rosmarie Waldrop (Shearsman, 2013); creative literary criticism. In 2016 I edited Rosmarie Waldrop’s selected poems, Gap Gardening (New Directions, 2016).
I have published essays on a number of subjects ranging from sculpture, Samuel Beckett, Maurice Blanchot, small press publishing, and contemporary poetry. Previous poems have been published in a number of literary journals and magazines. Public readings of my work have been given in Manchester, Keele, London, Southampton, New York, Providence (RI), and Ljubljana. In October 2020, I was awarded a UNESCO City of Literature residency in Ljubljana. In 2012 I founded the small press, Like This Press, which specialises in publishing handmade pamphlets and books-in-boxes, some of which were featured in a recent British Library report on small press publishing: www.likethispress.com.
Academic and professional qualifications
BA (Hons) English (Goldsmiths, University of London, 1999); MA Contemporary Approaches to English Studies (Goldsmiths, University of London, 2002); PhD in American literature and Continental philosophy (Goldsmiths, University of London, 2005).
I joined MMU in 2007, having previously taught at Goldsmiths (2003-2006) and Royal Holloway (2006-7).
Why do I teach?
Literature does many things, not all of them clear or quantifiable. Most often, reading is a balance between glimpses and fades, connections and gaps, identifications and confusions. Frames of reference come and go. Passages we once thought we understood are suddenly incomprehensible again. Things change and life shifts. Literature, too, never sits still: it asks questions of the world, asks questions of us, challenges us to challenge ourselves.