Merrie Joy Williams is a poet, novelist, writing tutor and editor. She was shortlisted for the 2020 Bridport Poetry Prize, longlisted for the 2020 National Poetry Competition, and is a winner of The Poetry Archive’s ‘Wordview 2020’ competition, permanently featured on their website. She is the recipient of a London Writers Award, and Arts Council England awards for both poetry and fiction.
Merrie is passionate about collaborations with other writers and artists, as well as residencies and commissions, which she feels keep her writing practice fresh and evolving. She was a poet-in-residence with MMU Special Collections and Manchester Poetry Library, who are currently releasing an illustrated broadside of one of her poems.
She was commissioned by Historical England, in partnership with Spread the Word, to research and write one of their High Street Tales (Woolwich). The short story, ‘In Between Days’ can be downloaded on Historical England’s website as part of the ‘High Street Tales’ Ebook, or listened to as a podcast on all major podcast platforms. Her most recent residency is researching The South Downs National Park, as part of Applause Rural Touring’s ‘Full Harvest’ project.
She runs freelance workshops for both adults and young people, one-to-one tutoring, and has facilitated workshops for debut novelists as part of the fiction project, ‘WRITTEN’. She taught English secondary for over fifteen years (11-18).
Merrie has read or discussed her work in various places, including The Southbank Festival, The Seren Cardiff Poetry Festival, and BBC Radio. Poems have been published in Poetry Wales, The Interpreter’s House, The Good Journal, and elsewhere.
Her debut collection is ‘Open Windows’ (Waterloo Press, 2019). Magma Poetry wrote: ‘She is clearly good at her craft. Her writing is assured, driven by sonorous language… generous and open-hearted poems’.