Welcome to In the Spotlight. In each post, we’ll introduce someone new who’s involved in Shake the Dust…

Laura Stimson is Creative Writing Coordinator (Artist & Artform) at Writers’ Centre Norwich, our consulting slam producer in the East.

What inspired you to work in the arts?

I love ideas. I like seeing those ideas become something real; creating something from nothing. That is what art is. That’s definitely how it feels when you sit down to write – and it’s not always pleasant but it’s always exciting. I wanted to be part of the process; of taking an idea and making it happen, which is why I ended up working in the arts.

 

Give us a highlight from your time at Writers’ Centre Norwich

I started out at Writers’ Centre Norwich coordinating a live literature programme alongside the poet Luke Wright. This was a two year funded post and we achieved a lot and had lots of fun doing so; including setting up a regional tour called The Poetry Link and managing an artist development programme for Escalator Literature, which is funded by Arts Council England. Live literature and poetry is still a huge focus for me, we have worked alongside Norwich Arts Centre and the BBC, commissioning regional writers to produce a piece for broadcast on Radio 3’s The Verb, we’ve put poets on the Latitude Festival poetry stage and taken poets all the way to Australia to take part in the Melbourne Writers Festival. Those are all definite highlights!

Why are you excited about Shake the Dust?

I’m excited by poetry and poetry in performance and anything you choose to call live literature! I’m excited by the prospect of encouraging young people to get inspired by words, enabling them to create whole worlds with words. I also love the prospect of working with poets I haven’t yet met and expanding the regional pool of exciting wordsmiths, who we can go on to work with in the future.