Olga Zilberbourg: A story from St Petersburg in the early 1990s

Read: Bananas for Sale by Olga Zilberbourg

Friends of Willesden Herald take both Southword fiction chapbook awards 2019

Congratulations to Jill Widner and Brian Kirk, both past contributors to Willesden Herald New Short Stories (as kindly acknowledged in their credit lists), on taking the International and Irish top prizes in the Southword Fiction Chapbook Competition 2019.

BBC Radio 3: A subjunctive story by Toby Litt

“Ian McMillan gets into the subjunctive mood with brand new writing from Toby Litt, a new poetry commission from Holly Pester, on the subjunctive in welsh with Menna Elfyn and Rob Drummond explains why the subjunctive is dying out amongst the young…” (The Verb, BBC Radio 3, 1 Feb. 2019)

Story of the Month, January 2019

The Willesden Herald New Short Stories Story of the Month

January 2019: Disappearing by Barbara Robinson

… Later, John places the kettle on the hob. I’m sitting at his kitchen
table again, rolling another joint. My eyes are level with his waistband
as he leans across me to take cups from a shelf, the tip of his tan-coloured
leather belt close to my face. I yank it …

Barbara Robinson

Barbara Robinson has an MA in Creative Writing from MMU and reads at literary events in Manchester. Her short story Supersum was short-listed for the 2016 Willesden Herald prize and her novel Elbow Street shortlisted for the 2018 Andrea Badenoch Fiction Award and longlisted for the Grindstone Literary 2018 Novel Prize. She has had short stories published in Ellipsis Zine and Fictive Dream.

Listowel Writers’ Week Irish poem of the year: Birthday by Brian Kirk

By coincidence, after we setup a page for occasional poetry, one of our past contributors* won a national award for an occasional poem. Link: Read “Birthday” by Brian Kirk, and two other shortlisted poems.

* Brian Kirk’s short story That New Girl was our story of the month for November 2018. 

Fictive Dream: Barbara Robinson “Everybody Smokes in Heaven”

“…an invisible force pins me to the surface of the road. I feel broken inside, like pieces of a jigsaw puzzle in a sealed plastic bag, then warm, liquid numbness floods me. I see sky, then the inside of my eyelids.” 

Superb writing from another of our past contributors, Barbara Robinson, whose evocative and affecting story “Supersum” was in our New Short Stories 9.

“Cull” a novel by Tanvir Bush goes to press

From Unbound:

“Alex has a problem. Categorized as one of the disabled, dole-scrounging underclass, she is finding it hard to make ends meet. Now, in her part time placement at the local newspaper, she’s stumbled onto a troubling link between the disappearance of several homeless people, the new government Care and Protect Bill and the sinister extension of the Grassybanks residential home for the disabled, elderly and vulnerable. Can she afford the potential risk to herself and her wonderful guide dog Chris of further investigation?”

‘Laugh and weep! With wit, flair and imagination, Tanvir Bush unfolds the secret life of a nation on benefits. Our nation….’ Fay Weldon

Tanvir Bush’s short story “Rictus” about the meeting of modern medicine and faith healing in a rural clinic in Africa, featured in our own New Short Stories 10.

Salt Publishing: Best British Short Stories 2018

Unless you’re rich in both time and money, it’s unlikely you subscribe to all the journals featuring short stories and read all the collections in any given year, so this is a good way to get a “best of” selection and keep in touch. The 2013 edition contained a story that originated in our own New Short Stories anthology that year (“Curtains” by Charles Lambert.) Here’s a direct link to Best British Short Stories 2018.