Happy 2016! This update is very overdue, but I haven’t had much spare time these past few months, ever since starting my PhD. But more on that later…
The first bit of exciting news is that my debut novel Dark Chapter has its first publication deal — it’ll be coming out in Sweden in Spring 2017 thanks to Norstedts, one of Sweden’s most prestigious publishing houses. They also publish Margaret Atwood, Elena Ferrante, Colm Tóibín, and they discovered Stieg Larsson, so it’s not bad company to be in! The deal was listed at the top of Publishers Weekly Hot International Book Properties in November. I’m looking forward to publishers making the book available in other countries… I hope you are, too!
Alongside my creative writing, I’ve begun my PhD at the Department of Media and Communications at the London School of Economics. I’ll be researching the impact of social media on the public dialogue about rape and sexual assault — a very topical subject, and obviously, one which I feel strongly about, given my own experience and exploration of the issue. You can watch a video and read an article on my research here:
At the end of October, I spoke at the Feminism in London Conference, as a nominee for the annual Emma Humphreys Memorial Prize. I didn’t win in the end, but it was an honor to be at the awards ceremony, both as an Individual Award nominee and as a representative of the Clear Lines Festival (nominated for the Group Award). To have the chance to meet the other shortlisted women — and hear about their collective efforts working against gender-based violence — was nothing short of inspiring.
Speaking of Clear Lines, we have begun to release videos from the festival online. You can watch them for free here, including videos of me speaking on the panel about news coverage of sexual assault, commenting on what it’s like to have your own rape reported in the media. There’s also videos from our Spoken Word Night, featuring some very talented poets, and more videos will pop up over the next few months.
You can read my end-of-2015 round-up here. Looking forward to what 2016 will bring!