Head and shoulders headshot of a woman with long dark hair

Announcing our 2024 Stoke-on-Trent Writer In Residence, Natalie Linh Bolderston

06 February 2024
Head and shoulders headshot of a woman with long dark hair

Natalie Linh Bolderston will be our Stoke-on-Trent Writer in Residence. Natalie is a Vietnamese-Chinese-British poet who has won the Eric Gregory Award and co-won the Rebecca Swift Women Poets’ Prize. Her poem ‘Middle Name with Diacritics’ came third in the 2019 National Poetry Competition and was shortlisted for the 2021 Forward Prize for Best Single Poem. She is an alumna of the Roundhouse Poetry Collective, the London Library Emerging Writers Programme and the VanThanh Productions Development Programme. Her pamphlet, The Protection of Ghosts, was published by V. Press in 2019. She has been commissioned by the Royal Society of Literature, the National Poetry Library, the Poetry Society and elsewhere. She is an alumna of the Roundhouse Poetry Collective and the London Library Emerging Writers Programme, and is part of the latest Writing West Midlands Room 204 cohort.

Natalie’s residency will take place at a range of places which represent the values and identity of the city as a whole, and themes of place, environment and community. Stoke-on-Trent is home to many diverse communities and has a strong working-class identity. It is a ‘levelling up’ area and has historically been underrepresented in the arts; however, it has a rich history within the ceramics industry (hence its nickname–the Potteries).

Natalie will undertake residency days and workshops at:

Drop City Books

2 Broad Street, Stoke-on-Trent ST1 4HL

Friday 22 March & Saturday 23 March, 10am-5pm: Natalie will be writing in the bookshop–stop by and say hello, and have a go at a writing prompt if you wish.

The Potteries Museum & Art Gallery

Bethesda Street, Stoke-on-Trent ST1 3DW

Saturday 20 April, 10am-5pm: Natalie will be writing in the museum foyer – stop by and say hello, and have a go at a writing prompt if you wish.

Saturday 27 April, 2-4pm: The Poetry of Exhibits
In this writing workshop, we will draw inspiration from the rich and varied exhibits available to view at the Potteries Museum. Whether you are most drawn to art, the natural world, or local history, we will use creative exercises to transform your interests into striking and colourful poems. Writers of all experience levels are welcome.

Advance booking is recommended and you can book here.


Unit 3, 64-72 Hartshill Road, Parklands ST4 1

B-Arts Climate Café, Saturday 6 April, 10am-3pm

Drop by to say hello, chat about writing and try a creative exercise on the theme of saving the earth.

B-Arts Pay As You Feel No Waste Café, Friday 3 May, 12pm-2pm

Drop by to say hello, chat about writing and try a creative exercise on the theme of community and food.

Other sites and dates will be added soon with Appetite – please sign up for our newsletter or check the workshops page for updates.


About the 2024 Writers In Residence

Our Writer In Residence programme supports emerging/mid-career underrepresented writers to engage with new audiences, new writers and underrepresented people in non-traditional spaces and in new ways. From 2023, we have begun a new programme: bringing the residence to the writer, allowing them to explore their creative interests in their hometowns, communities and unique places. They also have full rein to decide the theme of their residency, what they will explore and how. Each writer has dedicated time to write, residencies in unusual/non-traditional spaces to interact with people and gain inspiration, and lead writing workshops for local people.

The residency is part of the  programme. Natalie will also write a reflective blog and a new piece for the 2024 Creative Future Writers’ Award anthology inspired by her residency.

The residency is made possible with the generous support of Arts Council England, the Garrick Charitable Trust and Amazon Literary Partnership.

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