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Publishing house Lagan Press has announced that Belfast-based poet Colin Dardis has joined the Verbal Group as the new editor of Lagan Press Online.
Colin – a poet, editor, creative writer and educator – will create and curate all digital content for the Lagan Press and use the platform as a vehicle to showcase established work, shine a light on new talent, highlight upcoming literary events and create a dynamic online poetry community.
"I'm delighted to join the Verbal family,” said Colin. “And to be involved in pushing Lagan Press to the fore as a platform for the arts. Lagan has one of the richest back catalogues in Irish publishing, and with the likes of Deirdre Cartmill, Maria MacManus, Martin Mooney, Jean Bleakney, Carlo Gebler and many more, there is a rich stream of writing talent to promote.
“As this time when local arts are being slaughtered due to political shortcomings, the arts must show unity and firm belief in what they can offer. Creating an alliance between organisations such as Lagan Press Abridged, Poetry NI and Verbal Arts allows more opportunities to discover new works, and showcase the fantastic literary quality that the north holds."
Lagan Press editor, Jonathan Dykes said: “I’m delighted that Colin has joined Lagan and I look forward to working with him to publish and promote writing of high calibre by new and established writers. Lagan Press will be open for submissions of works in all genres from the beginning of February 2015, so having Colin come on board as online editor marks the start of what should be an exciting new year for the Press.”
Verbal Chief Executive James Kerr said: “We are delighted to welcome Colin to the Verbal Group as Editor of Lagan Press Online. For over twenty years Lagan press has published nearly 200 titles across all forms of creative endeavour. The Press has given a voice and a platform to countless authors and poets who have helped shape the cultural and literary landscape of Northern Ireland and the North. With Colin at the helm of the digital ship, we look forward to showcasing many more artists, established and emerging.”
Lagan Press was founded in 1991, publishing works of literary, artistic, social and cultural importance to the north of Ireland. The publishing house - behind authors such as Maurice Leitch, Roy McFadden, Robert Greacen and Padraic Fiacc - joined the Verbal Group in 2012.
Colin runs Poetry NI, in which he is the editor of FourXFour, an online journal focusing on poetry from Northern Ireland. Pen Points Press, a poetry micro-press founded by Colin, launched at the Belfast Book Festival 2014. He also co-runs Purely Poetry, an open mic poetry night in the Crescent Arts Centre, Belfast.