Calling writers in recovery from drugs and alcohol



If you’re a writer, or aspire to be, and have had issues with addiction, we’d like to hear from you. We want to see your stories of recovery, either in poetry or prose, for possible inclusion in an Arts Council-funded literary anthology. Find out about it here: The subject of recovery is wide: it could involve looking back at a time when you were dependent, or thinking about how that felt for your friends and family, or it could simply be a piece about waking up again to the world as you see it now.

Since the summer of 2016, I’ve been teaching creative writing to a group of people recovering from alcohol and drug addiction at the Hackney Recovery Centre (with St Mungo’s). I initially got in contact with them because I lost my father to addiction some years ago, and wanted to do something positive to overcome my sadness and helplessness around the circumstances of his death. I really enjoyed teaching this group, and as the weeks progressed and more members shared their work, I was amazed by the level of talent. So, I applied for a grant to continue working with them, with the ultimate aim to have enough good work to include in a high-quality anthology, which we will aim to publish in 2018. We will include work from my group at the recovery centre, and will do a national callout in the next few months to writers who have suffered at the hands of addiction. The theme will be recovery.

Award-winning short story writer, Zoe Gilbert, and I are working together on this project. Our main aim is to have as far a reach as possible in an attempt to show what kind of talent tends to go unrecognised, but also to get these people’s stories out there in order to educate others and make them see that it really could happen to any of us.

If you’d like to get in contact about this project, we’d love to hear from you. If you have a story to tell about your relationship to drugs or alcohol, or both, or you know someone else who might be interested, please let us know. You can contact me here: Lily.Dunn@MUNGOS.ORG. We look forward to hearing from you.