Book Launch and Tour. Nothing is Meant to be Broken by Mark Connors

Local poet, novelist and compere of Leeds’ premier spoken word night, WORD CLUB, Mark Connors, releases his first full-length poetry collection, Nothing is Meant to be Broken, on Friday 24 March.

Published by Stairwell Books of York, the collection has received critical acclaim from some of the country’s top poets, including regular Radio Four contributor, Kate Fox, Clare Shaw, local poet and radio presenter, Peter Spafford and Brett Evans, the poetry editor of Prole, voted best lit mag in last year’s Saboteur Awards.

Mark will be launching his book at The Chemic Tavern in Woodhouse on Friday 24 March from 7.30 pm onwards. Open mic slots are available. You can also catch Mark on his poetry tour over the Spring and Summer at the following venues across the region and beyond:

Friday 24th March • Headingley Literature Festival, Leeds
The Chemic Tavern, LS6 2NG. 7.30 pm

Wednesday 5th April • WordSpace, Horsforth
The Hop Shack, New Road Side. LS18 4QD. 7.30 pm

Wednesday 19th April • Poems, Prose & Pints, Harrogate
The North Bar, Cheltenham Parade, HG1 1DA. 7.30 pm

Tuesday 25th April • Working Title, Lancaster
The Three Mariners, Bridge Lane, LA1 1EE. 7.30 pm

Wednesday 26th April • Unity Words, Wakefield
Unity Works Café Bar, Westgate, WF1 1EP. 7.00 pm

Monday 8th May • Puzzle Hall Poets, Sowerby Bridge
The Blind Pig, 4 Tower Hill, HX6 2EQ. 7.30 pm

Thursday 11th May • Shaken in Sheeptown, Skipton
Bojangles, Newmarket Street, BD22 2HR. 7.30 pm

Thursday 15th June • The Stanza, North Shields
Beldons, The Exchange, Howard Street, NE30 1EW. 7.30 pm

Tuesday 20th June • Sale Out Loud, Sale
Waterside Arts Centre, Waterside Plaza, M33 7ZF. 7.30 pm

Thursday 6th July • Spoken Weird, Halifax
Victorian Craft Beer Café, Powell Street. HX1 1LN. 7.30 pm

Thursday 20th July • Away With Words, Hull
Union Mash Up, 24 Princes Avenue, HU5 3QA. 7.30 pm

Wednesday 26th July • Rhubarb, Shipley
The Triangle. 47 Bradford Road, BD18 3DS. 7.30 pm

“Mark Connors’ poems trace an enjoyable, sharp, often lyrical path through Irish paternal roots, growing up in seventies Leeds, step fatherhood and the things that suffer the breaks along the way in a life – hearts, crockery, snooker…There’s humour and nostalgia among the everyday dread and death and dreams of America. There are puffins with hair like Ray Reardon’s and a soaring that sets in every time birds come up, as they often do. Any time despair threatens: ‘Even Gods can’t change the past/so what chance do I have?’ then words carry hopes on wings to repair another day because as Connors so brilliantly shows us: ‘Sometimes poems like to follow/their own paths don’t they?'” Kate Fox

“These poems come dancing at you with a light step, but sock a knuckle-duster punch. Wired, but taut as the best jokes well-told, the poems shunt time and emotions around in unpredictable configurations. Connors keeps coming on.” Peter Spafford

“An utterly generous collection. Mark opens up all of his landscapes – personal, political, geographical – and invites us in. From Leeds to Mull and Donegal via the highways of Arizona and beyond, these poems radiate a warmth – and an easy, quiet skill – which always holds the reader close. Loss, marathon running, murder, birds and Brexit, Mark approaches all his subjects with honesty, humour, and deep respect, until it seems he can find meaning – or a redemptive beauty – in anything. The result is a collection which resonates and lingers.”Clare Shaw

“Well crafted and laced with humour, this is a mustang of a collection – wild and beautiful.”Brett Evans

You can purchase a copy of Nothing is Meant to be Broken  at

Author photo by Joanna Sedgwick.

Fiona Gell

Fiona is a lifelong reading enthusiast and book lover. Her career started as a bookseller and has never really veered away from the written and spoken word. It was a dream for her to be a founder member of The Leeds Big Bookend and the Northern Short Story Festival. She continues to be its Director.

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