World Book Night (2015)

Essential Poems

Want a chance to win a copy of Essential Poems from the Staying Alive Trilogy: Edited by Neil Astley – Bloodaxe? In Cardiff or London?* Read on…

*places chosen so, in the spirit of WBN, book can be physically given

I’m fortunate to be a World Book Night 2015 Volunteer!

What Is World Book Night?

World Book Night is an initiative encouraging those who do not read, read very little or who may struggle to read, to read more. Starting in 2011, it is now run by The Reading Agency. Each year on April 23rd around 10,000 volunteers are chosen to give out one of 25 titles, which have been specifically chosen.

The Book

I’m choosing to give out 18 copies of Essential Poems From The Staying Alive Trilogy Edited by Neil Astley – Bloodaxe Books. It is a small travel compendium of a number of poems featured in the three books: ‘Staying Alive’, ‘Being Alive’ and ‘Being Human’. They are a collection of poems throughout the ages, from classic to modern, chosen around the subjects of the human condition (ie. loss, grief, transition etc). Intended to help readers through life.


I specifically chose this book as poetry has been a lifeline for me through a period of physical and mental ill-health. I lost the capacity to read novels, stories, longer passages and at my lowest point of illness was unable to read at all. I began reading poetry as a smaller word capacity was more manageable. Over time I also found some poems began to help me to understand my own emotions. I went on to set up a meeting called Incandescent held in Cardiff Central Library, where people can bring along their favourite published poems or lyrics to share and discuss.

Who I am Giving To

I wanted to give others who may be in similar positions and struggling to read, the opportunity that poetry brought me. So I’ve chosen to give my copies to two local organisations, who have helped me (and my PA) in the past: Hafal and ME Support in Glamorgan. Another blog post about this will be on my creative blog: Juliette Llewellyn soon

However I am also making two other copies available. One regular Incandescent participant will be winning one as their names are drawn out of a hat later (Update: Congratulations Kath!). Also another I am giving away here via my Sensitive Girl. Travels Blog. This blog is also aimed at those with hidden illness and the travel aspect ties in with the portable nature of the compendium. The idea being that people would have access to a more manageable edition that they could carry with them when they are out and about.

Portable Poetry

As poems have been a source of medicine for me, I sometimes carry poems around on scraps of paper, if there is one that is helping me specifically at a point in time. Also I have a few audio recordings of poems on my phone, which I listen too when I need a quiet moment, a pick me up or just a dash of wisdom.

I also know of a local poet, Johnny Giles who takes this one step further and carries a number of poetry books around with him. Reading poetry whenever he has spare moments. He’s open to carrying all book sizes, as I recently saw him with a massive edition of EE Cummings. Very dedicated! Johnny’s partner, poet Mab Jones, also took part in World Book Night giving to Recovery Cymru members last night. Inspiring others.

Reply To Win

So if you are from Cardiff or London and would like to have a chance to win this special World Book Night 2015 edition, please reply to this blog post or to @sensitivetravel via Twitter, or my personal Facebook / Linked In page. A name will be drawn in few days.

Happy  #WorldBookNight 2015!

3 thoughts on “World Book Night (2015)”

  1. Thrilled to have won a copy of this collection, as I’ve been eyeing up the Staying Alive trilogy for a while now – and it’ll be great to have a portable selection to take with me and dip into!

    Your reasons for choosing this book for World Book Night are wonderful and moving and I hope the copies you give out find good homes.

    1. Hey Kath, really glad you’re looking forward to have your Incandescent winning copy! Think you’ll enjoy it. Thanks also for taking time to read my post & comment. Yes poetry has been part of a long journey for me healthwise, so I am very happy to be giving this book. Hafal’s copies were well received the other day (blog post to follow soon) and MESIG are pleased to have been chosen (I’ll be giving books at their upcoming meeting in few wks). It is healing for me to give these books for World Book Night, knowing they are going where they may help others 🙂 Speak soon

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