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Durham University

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Dr Paul Batchelor

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Associate Professor in the Department of English Studies

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I completed my PhD on Barry MacSweeney's poetry at Newcastle University in 2009. After that I worked for several years as a freelance writer, reviewing poetry and biography for various newspapers (selected reviews are listed below), and as a tutor for the Arvon Foundation and the Poetry School. I am currently Director of Creative Writing at Durham University. My research interests lie primarily in twentieth- and twenty-first century poetry from the U.K., Ireland, and the U.S. My current research is concerned with the film and TV work of David Lynch.

My first pamphlet of poetry was To Photograph a Snow Crystal (Smith/Doorstop, 2005), and my first full-length book was The Sinking Road (Bloodaxe, 2008). I have also published a chapbook of poems, The Love Darg (Clutag, 2014). My poems and translations have appeared in several anthologies and in newspapers and magazines such as The Guardian, The London Review of BooksPoetry, Poetry Review, The RialtoThe Times and The Times Literary Supplement. I can be heard reading my poems on the Poetry Archive. I edited a volume of essays, Reading Barry MacSweeney (Bloodaxe, 2013).

Indicators of Esteem

  • 2003: Eric Gregory Award: from the Society of Authors.
  • 2004: AHRC Doctoral Award (3 years): Newcastle University
  • 2004: Andrew Waterhouse Award: from New Writing North.
  • 2005: Poetry Business Prize: judged by Simon Armitage.
  • 2008: Glen Dimplex Best First Collection Prize: shortlist.
  • 2008: Jerwood-Aldeburgh Best First Collection Prize: shortlist.
  • 2009: Edwin Morgan International Poetry Competition:
  • 2009: Judge for the Basil Bunting Poetry Competition:
  • 2009: The Times Stephen Spender Prize for Translation:
  • 2009: Writer of the Year: Journal Culture Awards.
  • 2010: Arts Council Bursary:
  • 2011: Arthur Welton Award: from the Arthur Welton Foundation and the Authors’ Foundation.
  • 2014: External Examiner for Creative Writing BA and MA programmes: University of Manchester.
  • 2015: External Examiner for Creative Writing BA and MA programmes: University of Aberdeen.
  • 2016: Judge for the Michael Marks Poetry Pamphlet Awards:
  • 2016: Judge for the Seamus Heaney Centre for Poetry Prize:


Authored book

Chapter in book

Edited book

Newspaper/Magazine Article