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Cardiff, Football, lloyd robson, new york, nick fisk, the blues are back in town, writers on tour, writing -

I think it was about 9.30am when we arrived at The Football Factory, the venue where we’d be meeting up with fellow members of the NY Bluebirds, to watch the match, and then for me to do a little launch afterwards.

Bar manager Jack was a friendly guy and insisted on the first drinks being on him. I ordered some pancakes, and these arrived in time for the kick off of the Liverpool v Cardiff match and were quite tasty. Other members of the NY Bluebirds started arriving and Lloyd introduced me to them all. They were all much younger than I’d imagined. Don’t know why, but I think when Lloyd had told me in advance that most of them were married with kids, I’d pictured them being older.

We were also joined by a couple of Middlesbrough fans who’d watched the match that had been on before ours (God knows what time they’d have had to get up for their game). It wasn’t looking very likely that we were going to get much out of this game, especially after Mo Salah got the early opening goal. However, people mostly remained in good spirits, and at half time, I was introduced to a NY Bluebird ritual.

They have a copy of Craig Bellamy’s autobiography, which is signed by all kinds of people who have ever visited the bar, Cardiff fans, and I think, also some fans of other clubs. The ritual involves somebody, in this case, first of all, Luke, who was due to be moving back to the UK shortly, reading a paragraph from the book, while fellow fans kneel before the reader. The next thing, everyone launches into the following chant: “Bellamy! Bellamy! He plays for Cardiff City and he’s back in time for tea!” A bit bizarre, but enjoyable enough, and I was also encouraged to read a paragraph as a fledgling member of the group, to the same reception.

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Cardiff, João Morais, News, Reviews, Short Stories, Things that Make the Heart Beat Faster, travel, Wales -

‘Morais is right; if we have lived in a place long enough, we all know a Kung Fu or two. We probably know a Pavement Poet as well – highly educated immigrants who have gone through hell to get here […], only to find themselves treated with contempt by the likes of the obnoxious Jolyon […] Less familiar to some, perhaps may be the other characters that people Morais’ acutely observed stories: drug-dealers, users, people who are in- or just out-of or just-about-to-go-into-jail, rogue families, scary hardmen and vile, predatory males who present themselves as Nice Guys. […]' 'This turning-around...

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Authors, Books, Cardiff, Fiction, News, open mic, Parthian Books, Picnic, Poems, Poetry, poets, readings, Roath Park, spoken word, writing -

After the success of our first double book launch event at the Roath Park pub in Cardiff earlier in October, we bring you our new monthly reading event Picnic featuring guest readers published by Parthian and our friends and a spoken word open mic. This month's debut event features poet and novelist Rhian Elizabeth, essayist Dylan Moore and poet and fiction writer Mari Ellis Dunning. Free entry. 18+ Sign up for the open mic on the night, first come, first served. The open mic will be split across both halves of the evening, interspersed with the guests. Parthian books will also be on sale.

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Cardiff, João Morais, Reviews, Short Stories, Wales Arts Review -

'A large part of this derives from how well crafted the characters are; Morais seems to understand that people are at their funniest when they least realise it...'  Bethan James takes a look at Joao Morais' 'accomplished, poignant and entertaining' debut short story collection, Things That Make the Heart Beat Faster for Wales Arts Review. Join us for the launch at the Roath Park pub on 11 October.  

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Cardiff, cardiff book festival, created to read, events, highlights, news, poets, review -

'For me the festival began on the Friday evening, with the Poetry Showcase – an opportunity to hear from a wide range of poets, including some I’d never heard before. I was laughing out loud at Rhian Elizabeth’s poems, from her newly published book The Last Polar Bear on Earth, but equally impressed by the more subtle work in Rhys Owain Williams’ collection That Lone Ship and the surreal world of Norse mythology in Ross Cogan’s Bragr. It was also good to hear again from Elizabeth Parker, Claire Williamson and Mari Ellis Dunning, all of whom I have heard before.' ...

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