Apologies for the long absence – it’s been a year of change so far, adapting to life post university. But I’m starting to get back on my game with writing, and discovering new interests. Having focused on poetry over the last few years, I’m enjoying diversifying my reading at the moment, especially in non-fiction. I’m writing for myself, and although I don’t have the *encouragement* of grades and deadlines, it’s great to be able to pick up and put down projects, and try out new ideas.
Having lived in Northampton for around a year now, I’ve been trying to make it feel like home. Driving lessons are a surprisingly good way to get a feel for a place. I now know that Duston is pronounced Dusson, that the area around the rugby ground is Jimmy’s End (for St James, the patron saint of the local parish church), and that the only place I can afford to eat in town on a lower-end salary is Greggs. I’ve been exploring beautiful old churches (St Sepulchre’s), been converted to Gilbert and Sullivan by the talented Northampton Gilbert and Sullivan Group, and met and talked to so many wonderful, and kind people. I’ve spent a lot of time in the last few months waiting for buses in the town centre, and I noticed that if someone falls over, people here will have picked them up and bought them a cup of tea in the space of time it takes most people to say ‘Oh dear!’. Sometimes Northampton feels a little unloved, but not by the people who live here.
And so I was delighted to discover the The NeneQuirer, a local magazine which is driven by the same love and excitement for everything Northampton has to offer. It’s informative, intelligent and slightly sarcastic (but with a deep reverence for the things that matter, such as in their article on the great Tim Piggott-Smith’s death whilst performing in the town).
The NeneQuirer have also been kind enough to publish my article on the Saint’s Academy side, the Northampton Wanderers, and their cup game against Gloucester United, which you can find here. Being a Northampton Saints supporter has made me feel at home here more than I ever imagined was possible, and wherever I go next, I’ll take my love for the Saints and Northampton with me.
In other news, I’m really enjoying editing at the moment, and am looking or more opportunities to edit or proofread. If you’re looking for some freelance editing work, including poetry editing, academic proofreading, and blog/online content editing, I would love to hear from you. My contact details can be found here, or you can contact me on twitter @joanna_hollins . I’ll hopefully have some links up to editing work in the future, so watch this space!