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Poetry At The Print Room

(This is a past event and is no longer running)



Jo Shapcott was born in London. Poems from her three award-winning collections, Electroplating the Baby (1988), Phrase Book (1992) and My Life Asleep (1998) are gathered in a selected poems, Her Book (2000). She has won a number of literary prizes including the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize for Best First Collection, the Forward Prize for Best Collection and the National Poetry Competition (twice). Tender Taxes, her versions of Rilke, was published in 2001.

In 2010, Shapcott published Of Mutability with Faber and Faber, her first collection for 12 years. The 45 poems explore the nature of change, in the body, within the natural world and inside relationships. It was awarded Costa Book of the Year for 2010, beating contenders in Fiction, Non-Fiction and other categories. Sinclair Mackay in the Daily Telegraph wrote: “Of Mutability, is so especially rich and resonant that it deserves the widest possible readership, even among those who never usually think of reading poems…And there is a dazzling variety of tone and colour and subject throughout – Shapcott’s language dances lightly, and often with wit.” In 2011 she won The Queen’s Gold Medal for poetry for Of Mutability.

She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and is currently Professor of Creative Writing at Royal Holloway College, University of London. With Daljit Nagra she is Poetry Tutor at The Faber Academy.

“Jo Shapcott is such a good poet, with a sensitive ear and a gutsy voice. Her collection Of Mutability is about transformation – and that includes decay, life in all its leaving as well as its celebrating. This is a book to shove in your pocket and take for a walk, reading one poem at a time, and listening to the voice in your head.” -Jeanette Winterson, the Guardian.


Daljit Nagra‘s debut collection, Look We Have Coming to Dover!— a title alluding to W. H. Auden’s Look, Stranger!, D. H. Lawrence’s Look! We have come through! and by epigraph also to Matthew Arnold’s Dover Beach — was published by Faber in February 2007 and went on to win the Forward Prize for Best First Collection,  The South Bank Decibel Award and was shortlisted for The Costa, the TS Eliot and The Guardian Prize. His poems relate to the experience of British-born Indians (especially Indian Sikhs).

Nagra’s first pamphlet Oh MY Rub! (Smith/Doorstop) was the Poetry Book Society’s first ever PBS Pamphlet Choice in 2003. His second collection, Tippoo Sultan’s Incredible White-Man Eating Tiger-Toy Machine!!! was shortlisted for the TS Eliot Prize, as was his version of Ramayana in 2013. In 2014 he won the Royal Society of Authors Travelling Scholarship Award.

He is the Lead Poetry Tutor at The Faber Academy and has run workshops all over the world. He is a regular contributor to BBC radio and has written articles for The Financial Times, The Guardian, The Observer, The Times of India.

“Even the title is a pick-me-up: animated, garrulous, entertaining and breaking an unwritten rule (since when were three exclamation marks welcomed in poetry?) , Daljit Nagra’s 2007 debut, Look We Have Coming to Dover! (only one exclamation mark in those days), was received with joy and won the Forward prize for best first collection. (Anyone who hasn’t read it should prepare to be wooed and wowed.)” – says Kate Kellaway, The Observer.


Declan Ryan  was born in Mayo, Ireland in 1983 and lives in north London. He has an MA in Creative Writing from Royal Holloway where he is currently teaching and working on a PhD on ‘perfect speech’ in the poems of Ian Hamilton. He co-edits the Days of Roses anthology series and is a poetry editor at Ambit. Faber published his pamphlet last year.



The Faber Academy poets will be:

Paul Crichton, Kate Ghyll, Victoria Green, Mark Hubband, Katy Mack, Rebecca McKenzie,  Robert Palmer.