Cinnamon Press blog

Background info about projects and other aspects of Cinnamon Press.

In 2020 Cinnamon Press is 15!

post_cover
Down Deep Books
Writing Down Deep
Writing Down Deep

It's survival is a story of collaboration and generosity from so many people. We run on shoestring budgets, assisted by the fabulous Books Council of Wales, the amazing support and marketing services of Inpress Books and because we've learnt that improvisation is a skill that doesn't only apply to theatre.

Continue reading
  187 Hits
  0 Comments

Taking Stock

freyja_cover
Freyja peering out from one of the book shelves

August is traditionally our time for stocking taking — many boxes piled in the living room and hallways, books counted (and sometimes re-counted) and titles rearranged on the shelves. It's a time to assess how we're doing and who we are. Taking stock in many ways.

Continue reading
Recent Comments
Guest — Tricia Durdey
Great photo of the Wonder Talking Cat. Hope all goes well.
Thursday, 22 August 2019 13:02
Guest — Nigel Hutchinson
Who wrote the cat? I'd buy a copy . .
Thursday, 22 August 2019 14:24
Jan
The Cat is of course self authored - Freyja inc. - very expensive x... Read More
Friday, 23 August 2019 11:45
  474 Hits
  6 Comments

Writing Whenever

Writing Whenever
A woman in silhouette looks upward

by Sarah Connell

From seven to seventy there is a line, an invisible one that only I can see. From the child who sat in the library, too shy and too unconfident to admit to the questioner that she wanted to be a writer, the line stretches to my seventieth birthday celebration when my debut novel was launched. What connects them is the years of a full family and working life, when the notebooks filled up, the drafts were abandoned, ideas dreamed of and lost, and I never admitted out loud that I was always writing.

Continue reading
Recent Comments
Guest — Sheila Johnson
How inspiring this is. When we reach a certain age and haven't been successful with our writing, we begin to think it's too late f... Read More
Tuesday, 30 July 2019 14:18
John Irving Clarke
Not only does Whenever pose an intriguing opening question which draws readers in from the outset, but the story behind the book i... Read More
Tuesday, 30 July 2019 14:52
Heather Prendergast
I love experiences like this as I've always felt it's important to believe in what you love and enjoy. Then miracles happen to hel... Read More
Tuesday, 30 July 2019 15:52
  377 Hits
  6 Comments

Words and Pictures

Words and Pictures
a stone causeway across a river

by Mark Charlton

For the last three months I've been lecturing at the University of the West of England, teaching copy writing and professional practice. It's been as much a journey for me as my students, and a tonic, in the twilight of my career, to feel I have something to offer. But more than that, it's been a period of self reflection, for if I've learned one thing about teaching undergraduates, it's that it requires looking as deeply into your own practice as theirs.

Continue reading
Recent Comments
Guest — Ann Perrin
Loved this post rang so many bells!
Thursday, 11 July 2019 14:20
Guest — Daphne Milne
It's a very satisfying moment when a student 'gets' what one has been trying to convey.
Friday, 12 July 2019 10:47
  335 Hits
  2 Comments

Poetry and Prints

nick-blog-cover
An illustration of a pebble with unusual markings
A drawing of a motorway at night

by Nick Jones

When writing poetry, I try to capture meaning, whether it is in joy, wonder or melancholy. I think that a good poem is often understated, allowing the reader space for their imagination to interpret the poem in their own way.

Continue reading
  288 Hits
  0 Comments

In Search of Humans, Being

gareth-blog-cover
A man and a young boy stand silhouetted in a doorway

by Gareth Davies

Imagine a book launch that takes in seven countries, 16 venues and has audiences of between 50 and 250 people at each event. Established authors would give their eye-teeth for such a tour, let alone someone who is publishing their debut novel. It sounds too good to be true but I was in seven countries, I did attend all of those events and I was in front of all of those people. This was the because the launch of my book, Humans, Being, coincided with the busiest spring I have had in my 'day' job for years, meaning I have been able to piggyback an unofficial launch tour on to my work-a-day travels.

Continue reading
Recent comment in this post
Heather Prendergast
Absolutely enjoyed your blog Gareth. So funny and so encouraging. Have just paid for a copy: seduced by the blurb! All the best wi... Read More
Monday, 24 June 2019 19:04
  538 Hits
  1 Comment

Poets Talking to Themselves

poets_talking_cover Photo by Arthur Osipyan/Unsplash
Two men talk intently, a large graffiti face watching, unnoticed

by Ian Gregson

Continue reading
Recent Comments
Guest — JP Nash
I have written poetry and songs for years, but rarely buy poetry books or submit to magazines. I have an Eng. Lit. & Lang. Degree ... Read More
Tuesday, 20 November 2018 18:47
Guest — Jean Harrison
I think there's a place for political poetry on Facebook. If it received comments that should count as publication and show that p... Read More
Wednesday, 21 November 2018 11:18
  3014 Hits
  2 Comments

Pizza with Jimbob, Twoforks & Ashley

pizza_blog
The cover of the Ashley's new book
A photo of Ashley in a blue top

Not long now until the much anticipated launch of Ashley Lloyd Smith's debut novel, Pizza with Jimbob & Twoforks, at Derby Waterstone's on 1 October — "amazement" is promised(!), so it's a launch not to be missed.

Continue reading
  827 Hits
  0 Comments

Small miracles from distinctive voices

People warming their feet around a fire

We're really excited to be launching our new web site, with huge thanks to Sarah Willans of Zipfish.

Continue reading
  638 Hits
  0 Comments

How to be innovative, independent and quit social media

People warming their feet around a fire
Breakfast table with a steaming pot of slow filter coffee

As a writer and a publisher, it seems self-evident that I should be on social media. Yet recently, I've been questioning this.

Continue reading
Recent comment in this post
Guest — Kate Hoyland
Thank you Jan for the most eloquently argued case against social media and particularly Facebook I have yet heard. I am weaning my... Read More
Saturday, 11 August 2018 07:36
  904 Hits
  1 Comment

Where There's Method...

Front cover of The Cinnamon Review of Short Fiction
Front cover of Tamsin Hopkin's Shore to Shore

Ahead of the official launch of The Cinnamon Review of Short Fiction in Paris at the end of the month, here's an extract from Tamsin Hopkins' fascinating and revealing article in the Review investigating her approach to writing short fiction…

Continue reading
  1253 Hits
  0 Comments

Twelve Days of Editing at a Sri Lankan Cabin

Ahead of the publication of Undressing Stone, author Hazel Manuel gives an insight into the novel's editing.

Continue reading
  1204 Hits
  0 Comments

Putting it out there — reflections on launching Wristwatch

Guest blog by Jay Whittaker.

Continue reading
  1414 Hits
  0 Comments

Why we don't want to publish good books

towering bookcases merging into the sky

At Cinnamon Press we love books. We adore poetry and fiction, literature that defies genre and books that take risks. We find writers with distinctive voices who have something real to say exciting to work with. So what would make an independent press in love with words and story declare we don't want good books?

Continue reading
  1181 Hits
  0 Comments

Recounting Our Time Away

notebooks, pens and breakfast things lit by sunlight

The twice-yearly writing courses at Ty'n y Coed, near Conwy, has become a firm fixture in the Cinnamon calendar. This November's autumn course was fantastic example of why the courses are so important to our ethos: eight writers coming together to find support and inspiration, each of them making a breakthrough with the work and leaving with a stronger commitment to writing than they had are the start of the week. But don't take my word for it. Here's Diane Woodrow's take on her time at Ty'n y Coed this November.

Continue reading
  1137 Hits
  0 Comments

Don't Find Your Purpose, Create It

Jan walking along a gas-lit back lane
The cover of Jan's novel, This is the End of the Story
The cover of Jan's novel, A Remedy for All Things

The notion that you are here for some purpose; that all you have to do is discover the one thing hidden deep in the recesses of your soul or psyche in order to fulfil your life's goal or nature or some other externally determined objective, is a pervasive one. An Internet search will bring up many and various ways to discover your purpose with the assumption that there is an esoteric 'very reason why you exist', more colloquially 'what you were put on earth for'. Yet not only are these supposedly deeply-embedded purposes hard to find, most of them seem to be described in sweeping statements so general as to become meaningless. Things like being here 'to bring peace' or 'radiate light'.

Continue reading
  1211 Hits
  0 Comments

Dream or Drudge?


An irresistible sleeping sickness had Perl in its grip.

Hard to imagine two more different people than Alfred Kubin and Eric Basso. Kubin: print maker, illustrator of the works of Poe and E.T.A. Hoffmann, sometime associate of the Blaue Reiter. Basso a novelist, poet, playwright and critic, a modernist in the best sense of the term, a man located far off the mainstream. Yet, they've both offered visions of societies collapsing under the grip of plagues of sleeping sickness. In Kubin's 1908 novel, The Other Side (quoted above), the sickness gradually overruns the city of Perl, a strange, failing utopia located outside customary space and time. In Basso's 1977 cult classic, The Beak Doctor, the sickness has already consumed an unnamed town whose deserted streets are choked by swirling fog and which teeters on the verge of collapse:

Continue reading
  12219 Hits
  0 Comments

Nine Essential Ingredients for an Awesome Book Launch

Close up of the book's cover, Tracey Iceton in the background
Jan reading as the seated audience listen attentively
John gesturing, eyes closed, as he reads

I've attended 4 book events in 4 countries in the last ten days and although each one has been completely different from the next, they've all been excellent experiences. From the launch of Landeg White's Ultimatum in iconic Lisbon bookshop, Ler Devagar, to an upstairs room in a pub in the Welsh border town of Presteigne, where myself and Susan Richardson read from several of our poetry collections; from an art-space café/bar in Edinburgh for the launch of Jay Whittaker's debut collection, Wristwatch, to the cosy and well-stocked Drake's bookshop for the launch of the second in Tracey Iceton's Celtic Colours Trilogy, Herself Alone in Orange Rain, there were key ingredients that meant the audiences were delighted, moved and engaged. And books were sold. So what is the magic list that makes a book event work?

Continue reading
  974 Hits
  0 Comments

From Lisbon to Hay

A view of the bridge in the distance
Landeg White signing books at the launch of his novel, Ultimatum
Interior of the Libson bookshop where Ultimatum was launched

Lisbon is sleepy and quiet at 8.30 in the morning when I set out in search of breakfast after a good night's sleep in a tiny apartment on Rua Amadeu de Sousa Cardoso. Back at the LS Factory, a complex of restaurants, boutique shops and Livraria ler Devagar, where we launched Landeg White's novel, Ultimatum, last night, the cobbled street between former industrial warehouses and factories is totally deserted. There's a light on in the one café offering breakfast, but they don't open till 9.30 and I've got a plane to catch this morning, so I wander a little further down the hill.

Continue reading
  1271 Hits
  0 Comments

Maria Jastrzebska on The True Story of Cowboy Hat and Ingenue

Front cover of The True Story of Cowboy Hat and Ingenue
Photo of Maria Jastrzebska standing, gesturing as she reads to an audience
Photo of Maria Jastrzebska sitting, talking to an audience

In this fascinating article, Maria Jastrzębska talks about the genesis and background of her eagerly awaited new book.

Continue reading
  2211 Hits
  0 Comments