Welcome and contact details

Hi.

This site doubles as a commonplace book and a home for updates on my poetry. (A full list of my published poetry is here.) Until late 2017 I was writing as Alex Harper, I am now writing as A.D. Harper.

I’m on twitter as @harpertext, my email is: harpertext [at] outlook [.] com

Thanks for stopping by.

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Posted in Welcome

Name change to A.D. Harper

I’ve been considering a change of writing name for a while as there are several poets writing or performing as Alex Harper, as well as several others writing or performing non-poetry material. (Hello to you all, if you’re reading this!)

So, from today I’m writing as A.D. Harper. As far as I can see there are no other A.D. Harpers writing or performing poetry.

This site’s URL becomes ADHarper.com, and my email address becomes harpertext@outlook.com, matching my twitter handle @harpertext. (I’ll still receive email addressed to alexharperwriting@outlook.com, and following links to alexharperwriting.wordpress.com will still bring you here.)

Two obvious downsides (there may be many more): I’ve been publishing as Alex Harper for 3 years, and I’m sorry to make a name change mid-flight, but I’d rather change now than in another few years’ time. Secondly, researching the use of initials in a name throws up lots of issues, many of which are covered in Debbie Young’s useful post Writing: Using Initials in your Name. I may come to look fondly on the clarity of Alex Harper, and rue the need for decisions about whether I am AD Harper, A.D. Harper, A D Harper, etc.

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‘The Switch’ in Kaleidotrope

The Summer 2017 issue of Kaleidotrope has gone live, and I’m delighted it contains my narrative fantasy (and witchy) poem ‘The Switch’. You can read it here.

It’s my third appearance in Kaleidotrope. Thanks to Fred Coppersmith!

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‘Sheer’ in Mirror Dance

The Summer 2017 issue of fantasy zine Mirror Dance has gone live, with a theme of masks and disguises.

As well as fiction, it contains poems by Jeana Jorgensen, Mary Soon Lee, Todd Dillard and Robert Beveridge.

Delighted that it also includes my long poem ‘Sheer‘, a fairy tale retelling, or perhaps a fairy tale slice-of-life.

Thanks to Megan Arkenberg!

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‘Fallers’ in Rattle

The postman brought Issue 56 of Rattle this week, with an evocative cover by Jasmine C. Bell.

I’m delighted to be one of the 29 poets represented in the section on mental illness, with my poem ‘Fallers’. I’ve enjoyed reading the issue which has a compelling range of poetry, and there’s an excellent interview with Francesca Bell.

Thanks to Timothy Green!

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Oliver Sacks on writing the present

The most we can do is to write – intelligently, creatively, critically, evocatively – about what it is like living in the world at this time.

— Oliver Sacks, quoted in Bill Hayes, My Life with Oliver Sacks, The Observer, 26 March 2017

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‘The Well’ in Liminality

The eleventh issue of Liminality has gone live today.

I’m very pleased that my poem ‘The Well‘ is included, my fourth appearance in the journal.

Thanks to Shira Lipkin and Mattie Joiner!

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James Wright on the Olympian syndicate

In 1958, in July, [Wright] wrote me a letter (I’m sure similar letters went to others) in which he announced that he was through writing poems. […] The first issue of Robert Bly’s magazine, The Fifties, which he read at this crucial point, arrived like a reproach. (He did not yet know Bly.) He told me: “So I quit. I have been betraying whatever was true and courageous […] in myself and in everyone else for so long, that I am still fairly convinced that I have killed it. So I quit.” In the letter he called himself “a literary operator (and one of the slickest, cleverest, most ‘charming’ concoctors of the do-it-yourself New Yorker verse among all current failures) […]”

A day later he wrote again, admitting that “I can’t quit and go straight. I’m too deep in debt to the Olympian syndicate. They’d rub me out.” (This is Roethke talk, who during mania often alluded to The Mob.)

— from Donald Hall, introduction to James Wright, Above the River (1992), p. 29-30

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