Grid of four photographs showing readers at Hoxton Books
Gboyega Odubanjo, Rebecca Tamás, Emily Harrison and Wayne Holloway-Smith reading at Hoxton Books

Lobsters launch at Hoxton Books: Gboyega Odubanjo, Rebecca Tamás, Emily Harrison and Wayne Holloway-Smith

January 2022

Emily Harrison is a poet and writer from Swindon. Her poems have recently appeared in Magma, BathMagg and Tentacular Magazine. Emily is currently working on a collection ‘Grief Stitches’ about her experience of being sectioned alongside leaving an abusive relationship. She lives and teaches in Hackney. 

Gboyega Odubnajo was born and raised in east London. He is the author of two poetry pamphlets: While I Yet Live and Aunty Uncle Poems. Gboyega is one of the editors of the poetry magazine bath magg. His poem, Oil Music was a poem of the month in The Guardian last year and is taken from From Out of Time: Poetry from the Climate Emergency edited by Kate Simpson, published by Valley Press.

Rebecca Tamás’ poetry and criticism has been published widely. She is the co-editor of Spells: Occult Poetry for the 21st Century, with Sarah Shin, published by Ignota Books and her first poetry collection, WITCH was published by Penned in the Margins in 2019. Rebecca is a Senior Lecturer in Creative Writing at York St John University, where she co-curates The York Centre for Writing Poetry Series. Last year we published Rebecca’s first non-fiction work, Strangers — Tamás’s essays are exhilarating to read in their radical and original exploration of the links between the environmental, the political, the folkloric and the historical.

Wayne Holloway-Smith has published two collections of poetry, Alarum (Bloodaxe 2017), a Poetry Book Society Wild Card Choice, and Love Minus Love (Bloodaxe 2020), shortlisted for the T.S. Eliot Prize. He won the National Poetry Competition in 2018.

Makina is a collaboration between myself, Frontwards Design and the amazing writers we are lucky enough to work with. Creating bold, beautiful books and audio projects that promote and celebrate independent and emerging voices.Aside from the thrill of sending books into the world (especially those that cross borders), my favourite part about running a small press is what we learn from the writers of each book. Each time that is different. For Lobsters, I didn’t touch a single word of the work—not because I couldn’t, but because it just didn’t need any interference. I was lucky to watch Wayne edit it himself and the careful process he engaged in over a singular, long, freewheeling poem, laying the pages on the floor time and time again, reading aloud, moving lines and carefully removing words. We took the text to Patrick Fisher and together with one of my woolier briefs (which definitely mentioned ‘songbook’ and ‘half-eaten buttons’) he set to work on typesetting each page (and a limited print for web orders) with immense care. The result is, I think (hope) a book where both Wayne’s words and layout feel part of the same thing—I couldn’t be happier with it.