Her three collections of poetry are published in the UK by Bloodaxe Books: Kiss (2000) a Poetry Book Society Recommendation; Take Me With You (2005), a Poetry Book Society Choice and shortlisted for the TS Eliot Prize and Farewell My Lovely (2009). Comma Press have published her stories in their Hyphen and Ellipsis series and her reviews and other journalism have appeared in The Guardian and The Observer. Her poems have been broadcast on BBC Radio 3 and 4, most recently on Poetry Please, and widely published in journals and broadsheets including The London Review of Books, Poetry Review, The Independent and The Financial Times.
Her latest work is Thank You So Much For Writing, a prose memoir based on her father’s letters. The first draft of this was selected in 2012 by Hi-Arts and Jenny Brown Associates to be developed towards publication.
Before winning an Eric Gregory Award in 1997, Polly published poems anonymously and pursued a number of other careers, jobs and income streams including zookeeping at Edinburgh Zoo, writing for Paul Raymond Publications, teaching English in Hungaryand Rights Manager at Oxford University Press.
Between 2000 and 2004 she was Poet in Residence for the Southern Daily Echo in Southampton, a project which culminated in her editing and producing quarterly creative writing supplements for readers. Well known writers and poets including Andrew Motion, Louis de Bernieres and Carol Ann Duffy came to the region and wrote specially commissioned pieces for the paper, and Polly organised a tour of schools in the region by the then Poet Laureate. This project was shortlisted for a Daily Telegraph/ Arts and Business Award.
In 2004 she devised, co-ordinated and presented Pulitzer Prizewinning author Richard Ford’s tour of south-east England, a pioneering project with Arts Council South East which was covered on the Today programme and in national broadsheets.
Polly now produces the Literature Programme for Cove Park, Scotland’s International Artist Residency Centre where she programmes a range of writers and events. Projects include Poet to Poet translations exchanges with China and Israel and Freeing the Poet’s Voice, a unique voice masterclass for poets led by Hollywood voice coach Kristin Linklater. She also devised and still leads the Fielding Programme for new writers at Cove Park, which comprises a range of retreats and mentored residencies. She is a judge for the Eric Gregory Awards.
You can hear Polly read her poetry on the Poetry Archive, and read a critical perspective on her work by Sean O’Brien on the British Council’s Contemporary Writers website. She is represented by Jenny Brown at Jenny Brown Associates.