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Ollie O’ Neill - What We Are Given Zoom Launch

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Ollie O’ Neill’s online zoom launch for debut full length collection What We Are Given by Write Bloody UK.

About this Event

Write Bloody UK are VERY excited to announce the launch of our first book What We Are Given, by our first author, Ollie O' Neill. Join Ollie as she reads from her stunning debut full length collection on the day of it's release, along with guest readings from poets Joelle Taylor & Riwa Saab, and the opportunity for an audience Q&A at the end.

What We Are Given is a poetic exploration of the bonds which bind and break us. The things we inherit, who we are and how we become them. An examination of what it means to be human that is in equal parts tender and gritty. Ollie O’Neill’s poems navigate a series of emotions and relationships from romance to grief from family to friends. What We Are Given places everyday experiences under the microscope and allows us to understand how they come to be part of the bigger picture. It is unflinching in its honesty and intimacy - unafraid to embrace the dark whilst still leaving room for lightness.

Ollie O’Neill is a poet and writer from London. In 2013 she won the UK’s National Youth Slam Championship, and she is a Barbican Young Poet alumni. She has since gone on to read at venues such as The Institute of Contemporary Art, Soho Theatre, Royal Festival Hall, Cheltenham Literature Festival and many more. In 2019, her debut pamphlet Ways of Coping was published by Out-Spoken Press.

Joelle Taylor is an award-winning poet, playwright, author and editor with three full collections of poetry: Ska Tissue (2011, Mother Foucault Press), The Woman Who Was Not There (2014, Burning Eye Books) and Songs My Enemy Taught Me (2017, Outspoken Press). A former UK slam champion, she founded the national youth slam championships SLAMbassadors in 2011 for the Poetry Society and was its Artistic Director and National Coach until 2018.

Lisa Luxx is a queer writer, performer, essayist and activist of British Syrian heritage. She writes for freedoms, for healing, to mobilise and to inquire. Luxx is winner of the Outspoken Prize of Performance Poetry 2018, and was shortlisted for both Peace Poetry Prize 2016 and Sabotuer Awards Best Spoken Word Performer 2017. Her poetry has been broadcast across channels including BBC Radio 4, VICE TV and ITV. She was named one of the top 4 queer poets by Diva magazine.

Riwa Saab is a cross-disciplinary artist that works with space, sound and words. She started writing and performing her original poetry and music while growing up in Beirut, surrounded by the vibrant underground arts scene. She is currently based in London studying Performance and Creative Enterprise at Guildhall School, and is a Barbican Young Poet. She's interested in how the creative expression of personal experiences can be a political act.

Ollie O'Neill is one of a new generation of UK poets who are able to balance between the written and the spoken in poetry. O'Neill travels with us along dark tributaries of the heart, a cartographer of love and loss. Hers is an assured narrative voice, questing both the personal and the political. Her work is uncompromising and powerful, fusing sensuous language with arresting imagery; this collection reveals a tenderness and attention to the delicate. She takes trauma and makes a bouquet of it, a whole damn wedding. As a poet Ollie O'Neill is a time bomb. She is something about to happen.

- Joelle Taylor

The link to the Zoom meeting will be available on the online event page on the day of the event.

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