Wivenhoe Bookshop Magazine & Newsletter | Tuesday 22 January 2019

My Europe – Patrician Press – an Essex Book Festival event

My Europe – A Patrician Press Anthology

Readings by Petra McQueen, Anna Johnson,

Ken Smith and Mark Brayley

6.30pm Fri 16th March

Wivenhoe Bookshop

An Essex Book Festival Event

Tickets £5

Available from Wivenhoe Bookshop

Charitable donations will be made to Europaeum in Oxford and Luden in Brussels.

To book call 01206 824050 or send us an email


This diverse and varied anthology includes contributions by Canon Giles Frazer, Helena Kennedy QC, Lemn Sissay, George Szirtes and Stephen Timms MP.
MY EUROPE is one attempt to get the story straight, to explore the idea and the reality of Europe and our place in it, through a variety of sources – expert scrutiny, fiction, poetry, drama and personal testimony.
A topical subject with a different approach which is wide-reaching and not too dry.
Those interested to find out more about Europe, the EU, Brexit, languages and politics will find it a rewarding read with some serious and not so serious contributions.
MY EUROPE is our second anthology. The well-received REFUGEES and PEACEKEEPERS anthology was our first with donations to Help Refugees and other charities. We are already planning the third – TEMPEST – about our current political uncertainties with donations to Amnesty International.

About the Editors

Anna Johnson, who edited our Refugees and Peacekeepers anthology, has a degree in English from Exeter College, Oxford. She worked in London as a teacher then as a children’s book editor before leaving to raise her two daughters. In 2013 she gained an MA in book art and design and now divides her time between her family, work for Patrician Press, a variety of volunteer jobs and her own book projects. She is a clarinettist, enjoys mountain climbing and is a sucker for cats.

Anna Vaught, author of Killing Hapless Ally published by Patrician Press, has a BA and MA in English literature and is an English teacher. She runs a company offering mentoring and one to one English tuition and is an occasional freelance journalist. She also writes poetry as well as working on two new novels and some short stories. She is the mother of three young boys.

About the Readers

Petra McQueen is a writer and runs The Writers’ Company, which aims to help writers at all stages of their careers. She also teaches creative writing to people struggling with mental health issues. She has over forty publications to her credit and has won 16 writing competitions. She has an MA in Creative Writing and lives in Wivenhoe.


Anna Johnson is an editor, book artist and bag maker. She has an MA in Book Art & Design. Since then, she has worked as a teacher and editor on a freelance basis and also runs workshops in schools, colleges and bookshops, covering bookbinding and book making. She lives in Colchester.


Ken Smith is an independent Executive Coach, supporting people who want to find a greater sense of meaning, achievement and satisfaction in their work.  When not doing this he walks, sometimes near to home, sometimes through the forests and mountains of Europe.  He lives in Colchester.


Mark Brayley is a poet and novelist with an MA in Creative Writing. Having performed poetry for many years, he has a range of styles. He is currently researching his novel set in the jazz scene of Paris in 1952 and working on a poetry project involving translations of Viking poetry. He also runs poetry workshops. He has had three poetry collections published by Patrician Press and a novella will be published in 2019.


To book call 01206 824050 or send us an email


“Nations, like families, must speak the truth to each other – even, or perhaps especially, if that truth is hard to hear. We need experts, but we need more. To understand our feelings about who we are, we need stories and poetry too. Although we need them, facts are not enough. This book offers new insights on which we can draw as we painfully work out our future on the edges of Europe.”
Tamara Hervey, Jean Monnet Professor of EU Law, The University of Sheffield
“Never has the tidal shift of personal context, belonging and collective identity been so prescient, yet so challenged. As our days darken and twist, this beautiful collection, on an ever-changing Europe, is framed meaningfully with the syntax and empathy that Patrician Press stands for.”
Ian Shaw, musician, writer, broadcaster and campaigner for refugee rights.

“The European project has become a contested terrain. It is not just because of Brexit. The lack of connection between EU citizens and the institutions that they pay for lies at the heart of the problem. This collection of is a good reflection of the divergence of opinion amongst those who are passionate about the project and those who are simply unsure or opposed. What “My Europe” does is to highlight the importance for each and every one of us to take a stance.

The stakes are too high for the future of the Europe discussion to be left simply as a dialogue between the usual suspects. This anthology brings together politicians alongside academics and poets to provide a rich contribution to what will be one of the defining issues of the next decade.”
Dr. Haroon Saad, Director, Local Urban Development European Network
“Many thanks for giving us a finely judged anthology. We may not be able to stop the barbarians burning down the Village Pig Sty on the pretence of giving us an endless supply of roast pork but we still need to inspire hope and express solidarity.”
James Murray, Library Group, Suffolk