Holmes Fest 2017 Celebrates Conan Doyle in Portsmouth

Portsmouth’s very first Holmes Fest is coming up on 28th June, celebrating the world’s most famous consulting detective, Sherlock Holmes, his creator, Arthur Conan Doyle, and their relationship to the city. Holmes Fest host and local writer, Matt Wingett, reports. Wednesday 28th June sees the very first Holmes Fest to be held in the town where Read more

Magnolia Flowering in Cold Spring in Albany Road

Superior the knowing human glance that dreams, in lightly jostling verticals, ideas that make the candelabras dance, the whitened tips of candle flames that call   to mind a burning icy chalice raised beneath the sky’s acceptance. Over time these flowers were led in evolution’s ways to make their fine survival death-defying.   A blind Read more

STAR POems: All of Me

By Helen Larham   I have always loved him despite his neglect so when I stepped out onto the sea he bore my full weight, everything: All those times I had ventured in and they had laughed at my frantic back stroking and butterflying like a frog. My woollen costume expanding in the water corrugating, Read more


By Chris Campbell. Robert was in his early sixties and had lived alone since his wife had died almost two years ago. He had a daughter who lived in Eastbourne, down on the south coast of England. He lived on the outskirts of Oxford only two streets away from where he was born. He had Read more

STAR POems: The Hammock

By John Pearson I am the man-length canvas pulled out of store, strung between grey bulkheads ready to still the pitch and roll of any ship. I am a solitary place a cocoon to relieve the last watch’s weariness. I am a lying sick bed and even a second skin wrapped around a dead sailor. Read more

Self Publishing: Behind the Scenes with Authors Reach

Richard Hardie is one of the founder members of Authors Reach, a co-operative of local authors turned self-publishers. Here’s how it works.    The job of being an author doesn’t stop with the words “The End”. In many ways that’s just the beginning. Publishers tend to spend their marketing budget on promoting books from authors who they know will turn out Read more

STAR POems: 100 Ways to Lose Yourself

By Suzanne Toogood   Drink wine, beer, spirits that cheer, go on a bike ride, watch the tide, admire Gay Pride, read a book, be spooked by a spook, try not to look, don’t get hooked.   Go to the zoo, catch flu, listen to the blues, sew, cook, spy a rook, or a crow, Read more

STAR POem: New Road – a la Kelly’s Directory, 1972

By John Pearson   New Road, place of the Doll’s Hospital with Jack Grant Racing to Parham and Sons furniture removals shifting towards Marriott’s, upholsterers, lino and carpet dealers.   Mile End School of Motoring driving people to the New Road Wine Store and the Salutation taking in the sweet scent of Madam’s Blooms.   Read more

STAR POems: Quixotic Revelations

By Dale M Chatwin The cold chills my bones like hypodermic needles scratching stone. I rose from the gutter, thoughts fractured and cluttered, made my way back home, uninterrupted. The streets were deserted, the wind howled. The sound was a choir of souls, lamenting their former selves, anguished they roam, through purgatory, their home. Now it Read more

Post Mortem

By Jon Crout. Vaughn stared down Kennedy from the other end of the deserted, dust blown street. “Your portrayal of Chris Adams was too far removed from the original to be credibly considered the same character,” he called down the road. Kennedy narrowed his eyes and ran his thumbs along the top of his holster Read more