Am very happy to report that Sarn Helen has been awarded the Waterstones Welsh Book of the Year. Obviously, I’d be delighted in any event, but the idea that this will bring some of those ideas around climate and ecology to people who have not yet met them – this is a real lift of spirits, and has led to six or seven pages of this new novel (On the Utmost Limits of the World) in about a day and a half. Which for me is light speed. Long may that last! Many thanks to all at Waterstones for reading and supporting Sarn. I appreciate it more than I can say.

Black Mountains College

There are still a couple of tickets left for this year’s Climate, Writing and the Living World course at Black Mountains College, led by me and the great Jay Griffiths (with Pascale Petit back as guest reader, she is that magnificent). It runs from Thursday 20th July to Monday 24th July, in partnership with Literature Wales and the Arvon Foundation. Last year was really an extraordinary experience. It’s fed my writing ever since – with its ideas, and its sense of community and so much rekindled purpose…

Anyone who writes do consider joining us. And please share! Thanks a lot, TBx

Letters with Ben Rawlence

Am really happy to share this exchange of letters with Ben Rawlence, author of The Treeline and founder of Black Mountains College, on the Granta website. I got a lot out of the conversation – not least my focus on starling murmurations, which now seem to turn up in everything I say… Murmurations mean collaboration and it’s an honour to have such collaborators as Ben and, of course, Jay Griffiths. In fact, the three of us spent Saturday evening hunched over the table (where I’m typing now) dreaming up yet more plans.

Open Book

This is on Sunday if you fancy a listen. As you can see, I’d been listening to something about Stevie Smith when I took this screenshot. I’ve had a run of literary listening lately. I particularly recommend Crafting with Ursula. Ursula K Le Guin is one of the two writers I’ve been rereading in the past year or two who has left me wondering where I’ve been. The other is Tove Jansson.