More kind words on Goodreads

Another kind person from the Goodreads community has taken the time to add their feedback about Anatomy. Here are a couple of quotes.

‘Anatomy by Simon Travers made me feel warm inside, however, for it is less about the bare bones of the body and more about the spirit.’

‘Anatomy has many lines that you will want to remember and think are worth quoting.’ 

The full review can be found on the Anatomy profile page on Goodreads.

lentbook : soulwork

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On the one hand, there has not been a lot of new material posted on this site recently.

On the other hand, I have been busy researching and starting the process of my new book.

When I wrote Anatomy, the process of writing it was really jumbled as it started organically. I started writing poems and then did research and development in catch up. It worked for that project but I learnt that if I was going to do anything more ambitious, I would need a more linear approach to planning and developing my ideas.

I am a big believer in the idea that if you want a better book, then you need a better writer. If I’m going to write something better than Anatomy, then I’d better work hard at putting something new into myself that is predominantly about being a better person. I call this soulwork.

So my first priority in writing a new book has been to do this kind of soulwork reading. Naturally, as I come from a place of faith, most of my reading in this area is faith based. Over lent, I am going to be reading the book above ‘The Shape of the Liturgy’ by Dom Gregory Dix. I have a second hand version which smells of parish churches.

I think that there is a challenge for a writer: if we hope to write for more than information, if we hope to write to challenge or inspire or contemplate, if we hope to go deeper than the average writer does, then we must be prepared to let other books work that way on us too. There’s a time for critical thinking. There’s time for evaluation of arguments. There’s also a time for sitting under the experience of someone and letting them teach you. This is what I hope is going to happen with Dom Gregory Dix and myself in the weeks running up to Easter. And eventually, I hope what I learn marinates the plot and characters of the book which is coming later in the year.

If you’ve read this book and would like to chat to me about it, or read books that reference it such as ‘Christ Plays In Ten Thousand Places’ by Eugene Peterson, then why not like the Stackhouse Jones page on Facebook or follow me on Twitter?

Cantate Domino

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This poem was written in response to a visit to one of my favourite places, St. Ives, trying to describe what brings me back to the sea. Cantate Domino is a title for Psalm 98, but it is also the title of a sculpture that can be found at the Barbara Hepworth Sculpture Garden in St. Ives. The picture was taken on Porthmeor beach.

Cantate Domino

What brings me back to this beach is
the sound of cantate domino blown
in from the east; chanting above a
counterpoint between the ice-sharp,
froth-spray rock splash and the
ruminating bass of the eternal
sinking horizon; variations
on a theme of ‘I am neither deep,
nor strong.’ Amen. Here, forgiven
in the wind’s embrace, I sing along.

Review of ‘Windowboxing’ by Kirsten Kaschock published

I’ve been quiet over the past few weeks, holidaying with family and stuff.

However, I have not been slacking off. I did a review of Kirsten Kaschock’s new collection of poetry ‘Windowboxing’ that has been published by the lovely website The Small Press Book Review. If you’re interested, you can read it here.