It was incredible to be shortlisted for the Shine/Strong award this year and a massive congratulations to Adam Crothers who went away with the big prize. I bought Adam’s book when I saw the shortlist a while back and started reading it. Two poems in, I knew that this was one of the most exciting and interesting poetry books I had ever read. I’m a big fan of rhyme and form and Adam’s book has it all but so so clever. There are references in the poems to everything from classical Greek to 21st century pop icons. They work so well – they’re funny but they’re also self-deprecating. It was lovely to be on stage with Adam and Stephanie Conn, my fellow Doire Press poet. It was also great to have John and Lisa from Doire there to support us both.