Stories in Sandstone – a Nottingham Anthology

This is our latest book, a collection of Nottingham based short stories by members of the Notts Writers Group. The formal launch will be at the Guitar Bar, Hotel Deux, Nottingham on May 30th. I am reluctant to say more before the launch as I know all copies will be snapped up in advance and that would make the event somewhat embarrassing…. But I can say that profits from sales will be donated to the Nottingham Women’s Centre which is a damn good cause. Oh, and the book is of course a jolly good read.  Please email for more details.

Cover of Stories in Sandstone

Cover of Stories in Sandstone

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Nottingham artist and photographer Trish Evans

Trish allowed us to use one of her photographs for the cover of Grime Kerbstone Psalms and both me and Miggy were thrilled by this. We saw her work at an exhibition she held at Antenna, a venue in Nottingham that correctly describes itself as a ‘hub for creatives’.


Here is the original photo which (using time lapse photography) shows the journey of a free runner with lights strapped to his leg as he travels through a deserted factory. Actually….. for our purposes I had to mirror  rotate the image and crop it to size. This meant the writing on the sign which you can just see in the top left of the picture was reversed. I replaced the reversed text with the words “Beware Poets Working” which you can just see the tail end of…..

More on Trish here. (She’s bloody good you know. I think of her as Nottingham’s visual answer to Laurie Anderson).

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Grime Kerbstone Psalms by Miggy Angel

Miggy Angels book, Grime Kerbsone Psalms, is now on sale from our website, We do intend to have an ‘official’ launch as soon as possible because it certainly deserves one.

So how did this book come about, I hear you ask? I’ll tell ya then….

I first met Miggy at a World Book Night event at the Atlas Deli in Nottingham back in 2011. I’d gone with Glen Jarvis (who helped set up The Climbing Mountains Literature Project with me). We’d been invited in our capacity as members of Climbing Mountains and asked if we would donate some copies of our recently published book of the same name, which we did.

So we both went along and the truth is that neither of us really wanted to be there…. we were both tired, the venue was packed out and very hot and we ended up at the back of the room squashed up against a noisy drinks cabinet. And it was a night of poetry – which in my experience is either really great or pretty poor. Unfortunately it is usually the latter. Given all of this we decided to leave at the earliest possible polite moment.

But as it turned out we stayed until the end. Why? Because it was a brilliant evening. Simple as that. Brilliant.

Now the stars of the evening were without doubt local poets Mulletproof Poet and Miggy Angel,  two men who deserve a national stage: but everyone who performed was breathtakingly good. There was an outpouring of pure soul in the room that night.

And most of the other performers turned out to be people in addiction recovery being mentored by Miggy Angel in a creative writing group he ran. What an extraordinary achievement both by them (for most, their first public appearance) and by Miggy, in encouraging and then supporting people to reach such a level of artistry.

Mulletproof Poet

Mulletproof Poet

Miggy Angel

Miggy Angel

It became obvious to both me and Glen that we were watching something very special that night and we approached Miggy at the end of the gig and asked if he would like us to publish him. Luckily for us he said ‘yes’ and the result is the powerful, contemporary and hard-hitting book of prose and verse that we offer to you for your delight. So now you know the full story. Buy Miggy’s book, sit back and enjoy the ride. You will, you know.

Front cover of Grime Kerbstone Psalms
Front cover of Grime Kerbstone Psalms


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Bringing things up to date….

Hi. Been a while since I wrote anything on here which is daft as LOADS happened! (But then that’s probably why…. no time.).

I’ve decided to close down the Climbing Mountains blog (which was elsewhere) and post messages about the project here. I’m simply not clever enough to multi-task.

So. That’s it for now. I shall have a cuppa and write some more.

Byeeee. Mac.


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New e-book

Hi! Climbing Mountains is now available to buy from Amazon’s Kindle store as an e-book.

A quick way to get hold of a copy is to go to the Celandor Books website where it is advertised on the home page.

climbing mountains cover
Treat yourself to one, you know you want to! (And all profits go to support the Literature Project).

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Climbing Mountains Book Launch

The book launch of Climbing Mountains was a big success! (knew it would be as Glen Jarvis arranged it :-)   )

We expected a large turnout so it was by invitation only and the room was full.
Waterstones, Nottingham, allowed us the free use of their Sillitoe Room to hold the event in. We can’t thank the Regional Events Manager, Shane Maxwell-Atkin, enough for all the support he gave us.

We also want to thank local authors Jon McGregor and Nicola Monaghan who both spoke at the launch. Their support throughout the project has been fantastic.

Their talks were followed by Paula Torres-Silva, the editor, who explained how the book came about and the process by which she collected and transcribed the stories that were used.

Glen Jarvis from the Nottingham Crime and Drug Partnership (who supplied funding) then interviewed three of the authors. This was extremely well received by the audience. Lastly I (Mac McGuckin) talked about the Climbing Mountains Literature Project and introduced my two fellow trustees – Paula Torres-Silva and Katy Follows.

The audience then mingled and chatted for half an hour and finished off the pre-launch buffet that Glen had arranged. Feedback from everyone was very positive.

Finally I want to thank Maureen Black for sorting out all the administration for the event and staffing the sign-in desk.

Actually my final thanks go to all who have supported the project and to those who turned up on the day. You are all BRILLIANT!

Thank you.


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