Displaying items by tag: the palace of curiosities - Rosie Garland

Guest lecturer in creative writing

Focus on editing and rewriting with a focus on fiction.

Plus Q&A.

Aimed at students on the Creative Writing BA – but others are invited.

Thursday 30th January, 2-4pm

Creative Writing Department
Staffordshire University
College Rd,
Stoke-on-Trent,
Staffordshire ST4 2DE
Published in Gig List

I'm struck by the number of people who see biblical overtones in The Palace of Curiosities (especially how I named the characters), and who suppose that was my intention.

First up, there were no biblical intentions on my part. Secondly, if that's how you read the novel, that's absolutely fine by me.

The two main protagonists in the novel are called Eve and Abel. Some readers have seen a conscious tip 'o' the pen to the Genesis story: Eve being the first woman (except for Lilith of course – but moving swiftly on...) and Abel (her son, the 'nice' brother of Cain). All very compelling. Except that when I was writing the novel, none of the above crossed my mind.

Eve is named after my grandmother. Born in 1895 she was (just) a Victorian, and a wonderfully strong-minded woman to boot. She nurtured my love of reading and what greater gift could I have asked for. I named Eve in her honour.

As for Abel – his name is inspired by linguistic theory. There's a link below with references to more detailed studies, but here it is in brief. Human babies worldwide make very similar noises when they start to 'babble', regardless of the language they are born into. These first sounds are invariably ma-ma-ma and then da-da and ba-ba (hence words for mother / father in many languages being based on these clusters).

At the start of the novel, Abel is being 're/born' – with profound memory loss. I wondered what on earth he would say when asked his name. Maybe it went something like this, I reasoned.

- What's your name, mate?

- Ma-ma-ma.

- What did you say? Speak up, mate. Can't hear you.

- Ab-ba-ba.

- Abel, is that what you're trying to say? Eh?

- Yes. I am Abel (he breathes a sigh of relief, as he was getting panicky at not even remembering his own name).

So, no Bible. He's just babbling.

However, don't feel you have to believe me. I only wrote the darn thing.

That's the magic of novels. When they are out there - on the shelves, on your Kindle - they don't 'belong' to the author any more. They no longer exist in the vacuum of the author's mind.

What you bring to The Palace of Curiosities (and thank you for reading) is your own eye, your own ear, your own history, your own imagination. A whole life I have no idea about because it is yours. As soon is the book is read – it changes. Each reader makes it anew.

That is the alchemy of reading – and how very wonderful it is.

Further reading:

Click this link to go to Wiki page about language acquisition

Published in News
I had a wonderful experience as guest reader at The Arvon Foundation!

Lumb Bank in Heptonstall is a magical place – I've attended writing retreats there in the past, so it was a great honour to be invited to be guest reader.

Lemn Sissay and Hannah Pool are amazing tutors: truly inspiring. They made me feel very welcome. Thanks to the Centre Directors, Lemn and Hannah - and of course all the course participants for making it such a memorable evening!

Published in News

Many thanks to Cat Lumb for her blog review of The Palace of Curiosities paperback launch at the Manchester Museum for Manchester Literature Festival!

Excerpt here:

"When I asked her what had kept her going when it didn't seem like her book was ever going to be published she answered with a plain and direct: 'Bloody-mindedness'.

She spoke about how she couldn't stop writing even if no one ever got to see her work – something I have to say, I agree with. She was fortunate to have very supportive friends and the dedication inside the opening page reflects this: To everyone who believed I could get here, even when I didn't. This, I have to admit, is one of the more touching dedications I have seen in a long while."

Read the full review here:

Click link for Cat Lumb's site

Published in News

Really pleased to have an interview & feature in The Skinny this month!

It's free to pick up in venues round Liverpool & Manchester during October, or click on the link below and go to 'current issues'.

The Skinny - main website

Published in News
Monday, 30 September 2013 14:53

26.9.2013 - TPOC: PAPERBACK AVAILABLE NOW!

The Palace of Curiosities is now available in paperback!

Order it direct from HarperCollins here:

Click this link to order

Described as 'Bewitching' by Good Housekeeping.

'A jewel-box of a novel' - Sarah Waters.

Published in News

As of 17th September 2013, ALL tickets for this event have been sold.

Many apologies, and check out 'The Palace of Curiosities' event at Birmingham Literature Festival on October 5th.

Published in News
The Palace of Curiosities

Wednesday 16th October

7.30pm

The Manchester Museum
The University of Manchester
Oxford Road
Manchester
M13 9PL

Tickets £6/£4 concessions

Book on: 0843 208 0500

Join author Rosie Garland and Victorian sideshow performers for an evening of mystery and excitement in the atmospheric Living World gallery at Manchester Museum. Rosie will read from her startling debut novel which follows the fortunes of Eve and Abel – cast out by Victorian society, they become The Lion-Faced Girl and The Flayed Man, star performers in The Palace of Curiosities. Rosie has performed in previous incarnations as the singer in cult goth band The March Violets and as twisted alter-ego Rosie Lugosi the Vampire Queen. She has published five collections of poetry and last year won the Mslexia Novel Competition which landed her a publishing deal with HarperCollins. A circus troupe, also called The Palace of Curiosities, will provide further entertainment with the aid of fabulously inventive props and razor sharp wit. Prepare to be amazed!

http://www.manchesterliteraturefestival.co.uk/events/the-palace-of-curiosities-306

Published in Gig List
Rosie Garland and the Palace of Curiosities
Date: Saturday 5th October
Time: 7 – 8.30pm
Venue: Ikon Gallery,
1 Oozells Square
Brindleyplace
Birmingham, B1 2HS

Tickets: £8 / £6

To go to event website - click this link

http://www.birminghamliteraturefestival.org/

"Gentlemen and Ladies! How happy I am to welcome you to this Palace of Curiosities on such an auspicious occasion. What luck! What serendipity! For tonight we have mirth! Wit! And Jollity!"

Come and be dazzled by author Rosie Garland and her novel The Palace of Curiosities, a luminous love story set in a Victorian freak show. Ikon Gallery will be transformed by a circus troupe of the same name to offer all the atmosphere, wonderment and fun of a Victorian fairground sideshow. Prepare to be mesmerised by Rosie's readings and stunned by a veritable Palace of Curiosities, from the left hand of Cleopatra to a real life mermaid...

Rosie Garland is an eclectic writer and performer, ranging from singing in post-punk gothic band The March Violets, to her alter-ego Rosie Lugosi the Vampire Queen, cabaret chanteuse and mistress of ceremonies. She has published five solo collections of poetry and her award-winning short stories, poems and essays have been widely anthologized. She is winner of the DaDa Award for Performance Artist of the Year and a Poetry Award from the People's Café, New York. The Palace of Curiosities is her debut novel.

Book tickets for this event by clicking

Click this link to buy tickets

or calling the box office on 0121 245 4455.

Published in Gig List

'First person' - Stella Magazine

'Twisted Sister'

Where I recall my seven-year ordeal at the hands of a female stalker.

It took a long, long time - but I got my life back. With the help of friends, family and Greater Manchester Police.

If anything I say in this article helps support someone who is going through an experience like this, then it's worth it.

Published in News

News and Events

  • April 2020 - The Night Brother, Must-Read Manchester
    April 2020 - The Night Brother, Must-Read Manchester
    Manchester Confidential chooses The Night Brother as a must-read Manchester novel!

    Dystopian classics to modern crime - Nine must-read Manchester novels

    “Fantasy, romance, sci-fi, comedy…we’ve got a genre for everyone
    There’s a very good reason Manchester is a UNESCO City of Literature, as we highlighted before its bid to join the prestigious network in 2017. Innovative publishers, diverse bookshops and a lively events scene make it an unrivalled literary melting pot.

    Rosie Garland’s The Night Brother is our historical highlight
    Ever the entertainer, Rosie Garland sung in post-punk band The March Violets and now performs ‘twisted cabaret’ as Rosie Lugosi the Vampire Queen. But she’s also a literary maverick with an array of essays, short stories and poetry to her name (much of which she also reads at spoken words events citywide) and three acclaimed novels. Her latest, The Night Brother, navigates themes of gender and identity through two siblings in Victorian Manchester. Rich and Gothic, it’s a must for fans of Angela Carter.”

    https://confidentials.com/manchester/dystopian-classics-to-modern-crime-nine-must-read-manchester-novels

    Written on Thursday, 16 April 2020 18:18
  • April 2020 - The Night Brother - Best Northern Read
    April 2020 - The Night Brother - Best Northern Read

    An unexpected & encouraging piece of news!
    Northern Soul has selected 'The Night Brother' as a Best Northern Read

    Desmond Bullen, Northern Soul writer
    “In days that can seem desolate and uncertain, there’s a lot to be said for windows into a better world and, ultimately, joyfully, that is exactly the view that The Night Brother by Rosie Garland affords. Not that its window seat is cheaply achieved. Far from it.
    Rooted with disbelief-suspending specificity in Manchester at the end of the 19th century, Garland’s novel blossoms compellingly from the exquisite simplicity of its central conceit, one which owes the tiniest debt to the 1971 horror film Dr. Jekyll And Sister Hyde. Edie and her brother Gnome are joined in a very particular symbiosis, so that their singular sibling rivalry threatens to be the undoing of both. Themes that could be leaden in other hands emerge from the premise with a beautiful lightness of touch, developing into a persuasive fable of inclusivity and self-acceptance. This is a book that sings a rainbow at its end.”


    https://www.northernsoul.me.uk/books-best-northern-reads-part-one/

    Written on Thursday, 09 April 2020 15:26
  • 'What Girls Do In The Dark' - new poetry collection with Nine Arches Press
    'What Girls Do In The Dark' - new poetry collection with Nine Arches Press
    New collection forthcoming in October 2020 from Nine Arches Press

    I’m thrilled to be on the 2020 list of Nine Arches Press!
    I’m in the company of a fantastic group of poets. I couldn’t be happier.

    https://www.ninearchespress.com/about-us/news.html

    “Midlands-based independent poetry publisher Nine Arches Press, which achieved Arts Council England National Portfolio Organisation status in 2018, will publish eleven new books of poetry in 2020, from a mix of established and emerging poets from across the UK and across the world…

    Acclaimed novelist Rosie Garland will also join the 2020 list in October with her third full collection of poems What Girls Do in the Dark, a book alive with galactic, glimmering energy. Rosie’s award-winning short and long fiction, poems and essays have been widely anthologised and in 2019 she was selected by Val McDermid as one of the 10 most compelling LGBTQI+ writers working in the UK.”

    Image: Poets confirmed for the Nine Arches Press 2020 list
    Top: l-r: Jennifer Wong, Rishi Dastidar, Abegail Morley, Geraldine Clarkson, Nina Mingya Powles.
    Bottom: l-r: Peter Kahn, Maria Taylor, Gregory Leadbetter, Rosie Garland, Kate Fox

    Written on Saturday, 08 February 2020 14:20
  • 11th & 12th January 2020 - Bhubaneswar Literary Meet & Mumbai Spoken Fest
    11th & 12th January 2020 - Bhubaneswar Literary Meet & Mumbai Spoken Fest

    I’m deeply honoured!
    The British Council has invited me to read, perform, and present workshops in India…
    I’ve been invited to TWO exciting literary events: Bhubaneswar Literary Meet (11th January 2020) AND Mumbai Spoken Fest by Kommune (12th January 2020).

    I can’t wait – not only for the opportunity to share my work in India for the first time… but to meet so many inspiring writers!

    Written on Monday, 23 December 2019 14:19
  • 10.8.2019 - Val McDermid's 10 most compelling LGBTQI writers in the UK today
    10.8.2019 - Val McDermid's 10 most compelling LGBTQI writers in the UK today

    I’m thrilled to announce that Val McDermid has selected me as one of the 10 most compelling LGBTQI+ writers working in the UK today!

    Val said: “These writers are writing for everyone. These are not words for a niche readership. These are not writings for a ghetto. These are the works of writers who have something to say that can be – and should be – heard by as many people as possible.”

    She continued: “Auden was wrong when he claimed “poetry makes nothing happen”. Words do change the world, reader by reader. They open our eyes, they provoke thought. The work of these 10 writers… will awaken in us fresh delight in the wonder of words.”

    The list was commissioned by the National Centre for Writing and British Council, supported by Arts Council England as part of a two-year programme to promote writing from the UK to an international audience. It also includes the amazing Colette Bryce, Juno Dawson, Juliet Jacques, Keith Jarrett, Kirsty Logan, Andrew McMillan, Fiona Mozley, Mary Paulson-Ellis & Luke Turner.

    The Guardian - The Word Is Out. Val McDermid selects Britain's 10 most outstanding lgbtq writers

    Written on Wednesday, 14 August 2019 08:44