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Announcing Quay Words and Libraries Unlimited shared Writer-in-Residence Tolu Agbelusi

Posted on 21 Jan 2021

Exploring the Stories of Exeter’s Women February and March 2021

Quay Words and Libraries Unlimited are delighted to announce that we will be hosting the acclaimed poet Tolu Agbelusi as our shared writer-in-residence during the months of February and March. Tolu will be running a series of exciting workshops, events and chances to meet-the-writer online, all with a focus of exploring the stories of Exeter’s women. She is seeking contributions from the general public.

We want your stories. Over the next two months, Tolu is inviting members of the public in Exeter to share stories about remarkable women from Exeter. This could be your mother, a teacher, a group of friends, etc. Send in a picture of them or a place in Exeter that reminds you of them and up to 200 words about the person and the place to customhouse@literatureworks.org.uk. The deadline is 31st March. These offerings will be incorporated into a production at the end of the Residency.

Tolu will be researching and exploring the archives in Exeter Library as well as the history of Exeter Custom House in order to find stories about the women in Exeter’s past. This will sit alongside stories gathered from our open call, and from her digital workshops and meet-the-writer sessions.

Tolu will be reading from her new poetry collection Locating Strongwoman and talking about her plans for the residency in a digital event on Friday 19th February 2021 at 6.30pm. You can book online at exetercustomhouse.org.uk and librariesevolve.org.uk. The dates for her upcoming workshops will be announced in the coming weeks.

Tolu Agbelusi is the author of Locating Strongwoman (Jacaranda Books 2020). A Nigerian British poet, playwright, educator and human rights lawyer. She was shortlisted for the 2018 White Review Poetry Prize and Longlisted for the Jerwood Compton Poetry Prize in 2017 and 2019. Her work has been published internationally including in Aké Review, White Review, Pittsburgh Poetry Review, Brittle Paper and Peepal Tree’s Filligree Anthology. Tolu has performed on many stages including at Cheltenham Lit Festival, Stanza International Poetry Festival, Lagos International Poetry Festival Poetry Africa & Women of the World Festival. She is the founder of Home Sessions, a poetry development program for young Black poets and she also facilitates a variety of workshops for schools, universities, festivals, etc. For more information about her work, visit www.ToluAgbelusi.com

Quay Words is a partnership between Exeter Canal and Quay Trust and Literature Works, the literature development charity for South West England. Quay Words is based at the historic Exeter Custom House on Exeter Quayside.  It showcases literature as an accessible and diverse art form and is funded by Arts Council England until May 2022 to continue developing this Grade 1 listed building as a hub for literature at the heart of Exeter – a newly-designated UNESCO City of Literature.

For further information, please visit the Quay Words website:  www.exetercustomhouse.org.uk

Evolve is Libraries Unlimited’s cultural development and commissioning initiative that seeks to find the next version of libraries through a process of piloting, prototyping and co-designing. Dedicated to building libraries relevance for future generations it looks to champion and inspire new and upcoming voices through interactive artworks, playable technologies, innovative experiences and creative resources.

For further information, please visit the Evolve website:  www.librariesevolve.org.uk

It is made possible through funding from Arts Council England and Exeter City Council.

Exeter Library is Libraries Unlimited’s flagship city centre library with over 1km of shelves containing over 60,000 books, CDs and DVDs. One of the busiest public buildings in the South West of England, the library has a reserve stack of approximately 150,000 items and the Special Collections Archive consists of early printed books ranging in date from an Incunable of 1480 to c.1900. Additional resources include large children’s library, a dedicated teen area, Business and IP Centre, FabLab, meeting rooms, public access PCs and café.

Events

Tolu AgbelusiMeet the writer-in-residence sessions: with Tolu Agbelusi
Friday 26th February, 12 – 2.20pm

This is your chance to meet Quay Words and Libraries Unlimited Writer-in-Residence Tolu Agbelusi in a one-to-one 20 minute Zoom slot. During her residency Tolu is exploring the stories of Exeter’s women. You can either come with a story of Exeter’s remarkable women to share with Tolu for her ongoing research or come with questions about your own writing.

You will be emailed a Zoom link after booking.  Book your free place here.

 

Tolu AgbelusiMeet the writer-in-residence sessions: with Tolu Agbelusi
Friday 5th March, 12 – 2.20pm

This is your chance to meet Quay Words and Libraries Unlimited Writer-in-Residence Tolu Agbelusi in a one-to-one 20 minute Zoom slot. During her residency Tolu is exploring the stories of Exeter’s women. You can either come with a story of Exeter’s remarkable women to share with Tolu for her ongoing research or come with questions about your own writing.

You will be emailed a Zoom link after booking. Book your free place here.

 

Tolu AgbelusiTelling our stories without apology – free online workshop
Friday 19th March, 6 – 7.30pm

Join us for a session with Tolu Agbelusi, the Writer-In- Residence for Quay Words/ Libraries Unlimited who will be exploring stories of present and past Exeter women.

In this session, using poetry, references from the Unfinished Business exhibition and stories from the archives, Tolu will facilitate an exploration of the many ways women can write and reclaim their stories. Participants will be encouraged to write and will by invitation, be able to share at a public reading on 31st March 2020.

This workshop will take place via Zoom, a link will be sent after booking.

Book your free place hereSpaces are limited to 10.

 

Locating Strongwoman book cover Tolu AgbelusiTelling our stories live – Cancelled
Wednesday 28th April, 6.30 – 8pm, doors open at 6pm

Tolu Agbelusi introduces new voices from Exeter who have participated in the Telling Our Stories Workshops. Emerging writers will read from their work developed as part of Tolu’s shared residency with Quay Words and Libraries Unlimited, exploring the stories of Exeter’s remarkable women.

This free event will be live streamed via Crowdcast.

You can purchase a copy of Tolu’s collection, Locating Strongwoman from Crediton Community Bookshop’s website.

 

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…in the unlimited potential of library services to make a positive difference to people’s lives and communities through a shared love of reading and access to high quality information and facilities.