MSt alumna Stephanie Scott’s novel “The Sentence” to be published in 2019

MSt alumna Stephanie Scott’s novel “The Sentence” is to be published in 2019published by Weidenfeld & Nicholson in June 2019 (U.K. & Commonwealth) and by Doubleday in Spring 2020 (USA &Canada).

From the Weidenfeld & Nicholson press release:

“… a stunning debut by Stephanie Scott, THE SENTENCE.

Within the Tokyo underworld there is an industry which exists to break up marriages. It is known today as wakaresaseya. This business is composed of agents who, for a fee, can be hired by one spouse to seduce the other and provide grounds for divorce on favourable terms. The Sentence tells the story of Takashi Nakamura, a wakaresaseya agent, who is hired by a man to seduce his wife, Rina. But then Rina and Takashi fall in love. So why, at the beginning of the story, is Takashi in prison, accused of Rina’s murder? Now, twenty years later, Rina’s daughter Sumiko decides to find out what really happened…”

MSt tutor Anna Beer on BBC Four, in “Unsung Heroines”, 22nd June 2018

MSt tutor Anna Beer is appearing in BBC Four’s Unsung Heroines: the Lost World of Female Composers, 22nd June 2018 at 8 pm (UK)

From the BCC Four announcement:

Danielle de Niese explores the lives and works of five female composers – from the Middle Ages to the late 20th century – who were famous in their lifetimes, but whose work was then forgotten.

Western classical music has traditionally been seen as a procession of male geniuses, but the truth is that women have always composed. Hildegard of Bingen, Francesca Caccini, Clara Schumann, Florence Price and Elizabeth Maconchy – all these women battled to fulfil their ambitions and overcome the obstacles that society placed in their way. They then disappeared into obscurity, and only some have found recognition again.

MSt alumna JC Niala’s work in London Theatre showcase, 19th & 28th June 2018

MSt alumna JC Niala has been chosen as one of the emerging storytellers whose work is to be showcased in London, on the 19th and 28th of June

From the announcement:

Using the theme of ‘Otherness and Hospitality’, the TellYours 2018 storytellers will showcase their tales after completing an intense six month professional development programme run by Filotico Arts in collaboration with world-leading storyteller Daniel Morden, award-winning theatre director Jennifer Tang and arts producers Renaissance One and Counterpoint Arts.”

The showcase will take place at Canada Water Theatre on June 19 and Battersea Arts Centre – BAC on June 28, 2018.

More information and tickets here.

MSt tutor Sam Thompson’s novel “Jott” published by John Murray

MSt tutor Sam Thompson’s new novel Jott has been published by John Murray.

From the publisher’s announcement:

“In February of 1935, two young Irishmen walk in the grounds of a London mental hospital. Arthur Bourne, a junior psychiatrist, is about to jeopardise his future for his closest friend, an aspiring writer called Louis Molyneux.

Arthur has been overshadowed since childhood by his brilliant, troubled friend. But after years of playing the unassuming companion, he is learning that loyalty has its costs: that old friendship may thwart new love, and perhaps even blur distinctions between the sane and the mad . . .

Jott is a story about friendship, madness and modernism from the author of the Man Booker-longlisted Communion Town.”

Read more about it at the John Murray website, and see Sam talk about it



MSt tutor Peter More wins 2018 Mary Soames Award for History

MSt tutor Peter Moore has been awarded the Mary Soames Award for History.

From the press release

“Peter Moore, author of The Sunday Times bestsellerThe Weather Experiment”, has been presented with the Mary Soames Award for History at a prestigious ceremony in London this week (Wednesday 13 June). The award was created as a gift to Lady Soames, Sir Winston Churchill’s youngest daughter, to mark her 90th birthday, in 2012, and is given in recognition of achievement in history.

Peter was one of 130 people being honoured at the ceremony to mark the successful completion of their overseas research as Churchill Fellows. Churchill Fellows are funded to travel for 4-8 weeks overseas, researching new ideas that can make a difference to their communities or professions in the UK.

For his Fellowship, Peter travelled to Australia and New Zealand in 2016 to research the story of HM Bark Endeavour. Endeavour famously carried James Cook on his first great voyage, visiting Pacific islands unknown to European geography, charting New Zealand for the first time and the eastern coast of Australia and almost foundering on the Great Barrier Reef.

Peter’s research in Australia and New Zealand informed his forthcoming book, ‘Endeavour: The Ship and the Attitude that Changed the World’, which will be published in the UK on 23 August 2018 (Chatto & Windus) and in the USA (Farrar, Straus & Giroux) shortly afterwards.

Speaking about his Fellowship, Peter said, “It is easy to think that Endeavour’s story belongs firmly in the past. It’s now 250 years since James Cook, Joseph Banks and ninety or so others set out from Plymouth in a tiny coal collier bound for the far side of the world. But the effects of what happened then are still very much being felt today. Being a Churchill Fellow allowed me to follow the story as best I could: meeting academics in Wellington and Canberra and talking to knowledge custodians of indigenous communities on the New South Wales coast and the Bay of Islands.”

“It was an incredibly enriching experience and I’d urge others wanting to travel to broaden their understanding of a subject to apply for a Churchill Fellowship too.”


For more information about the fellowships visit

Poetry reading by MSt alumni Romola Parish, Humphrey Astley, Catherine Higgins-Moore, Mary-Jane Holmes, Laura Theis online

(photo from Kellogg College)

MSt alumni Romola Parish, Humphrey ‘Huck’ Astley, Catherine Higgins-Moore (2009), Mary-Jane Holmes, and Laura Theis read at Kellogg College on 21st May 2018. You can watch them read in the video kindly made available by the College, and read more about them and the event here.


MSt alumna Mary-Jane Holmes’ poetry collection “Heliotrope with Matches and Magnifying Glass” published by Pindrop Press

From the Pindrop Press announcement:

“Mary-Jane Holmes, winner of the Bridport Prize 2017, dazzles with this, her debut collection. These poems range far and wide – from the landscapes, stories and traditions of the North Pennines, rich with dialect; to an Occitan hamlet with its chanterelles and walnut harvests, via the many voices of wind, water and rural history; some agonising, some benedictory. Meet the female roofer determined to shove it to the men; Eros escaping from a nursing home. Witness the intimate rites of a family preparing a body for burial; the ordeal of tattoo removal; the girl in a pencil skirt and Doc Martens on the edge of a bridge during rush hour. You’ll never see things quite the same again.

 Praise for Heliotrope with Matches and Magnifying Glass:

“What we hear distinctly in these vivid geographies is a new voice in the poetics of landscape. In the musical interweave between her haunting evocations of the English Pennines and her echoing conversations with the 20th-century Argentine poet Alfonsina Storni, Holmes has created a richly generative space in which her searching imagination seems vitally at home.” Jane Draycott

“I can hardly believe this rich, intense and compellingly readable collection is a debut. I have rarely read so many poems in a row filled with lines as fresh, as lively and as apt to the complexity of such wide-ranging subject matter. Those who love strikingly original language for its own sake will enjoy this book, as will those who like their poems to be located in the reality of time and place, with strong narrative underpinning. It’s a perfect coming-together of concern for the environment and for the human with a commitment to the highest standards of aesthetic representation. For me, Holmes is perhaps the most convincingly rural and at the same time most convincingly contemporary English poet since Ted Hughes. Surely one of the collections of the year.” Dave Lordan

Read more about the  collection, including a sample poem, and order it, from the Pindrop website.

MSt tutor Amal Chatterjee’s play “Finding José” in Tamasha’s scratch night, London, 25th May 2018

MSt tutor Amal Chatterjee’s play, Finding José, is one of four  in Tamasha’s “Over to You” scratch night on 25th May 2018.

Date: Friday, 25 May 20178, 7:30pm
Venue: Rich Mix, 35-47 Bethnal Green Road, London E1 6LA

From Tamasha’s website:

We want to scratch the plays a company like ours – a diverse, cutting edge touring theatre company of 27 years – should be producing. …Over the course of three weeks, 70 artists submitted plays to scratch … we have narrowed this down to the four gripping short plays we will present, including:

Finding José by Amal Chatterjee
Graveyard Girlz by Lakesha Arie-Angela
Other Please Explain by Lynsey Martenstyn
The Affairs of Men by Sid Sagar

The plays will be followed by a Q&A with the writers.

More details from Tamasha

Booking (tickets £8-£10)

MSt alumna JC Niala at AfOx (Africa Oxford Initiative) on May 11th, 2018

From the website:

AfOx insaka

The AfOx insaka is a gathering for sharing ideas and knowledge about Africa-focused research with speakers from diverse and varied academic disciplines. There are two events each term. On Friday of Week 3, and Friday of Week 7. Each event will feature two talks by speakers from different disciplines, followed by questions and discussion. Drinks will be served afterwards.

Friday 11th May, 2018
J C Niala, University of Oxford; “History Hidden in Plain Site’ African Soldiers in WW1 & the seeds of Colonial Resistance”
Peter Horby and Nzelle Delphine Kayem