Dr Maria Sledmere

Lecturer In English And Creative Writing

Creative Writing


Personal statement

I joined Strathclyde in 2022 as a Lecturer in Creative Writing (Poetry). My research and practice are wide-ranging, interdisciplinary and collaborative, exploring themes of ecology, technology and the everyday in literature. I have also taught English Literature and Creative Writing at the University of Glasgow, focusing on: poetry and poetics; nature and ecology; class, queerness and race in contemporary experimental writing; editing and publishing. Outside of academia, through organisations including Beyond Form Creative Writing, Scottish Graduate School of Arts and Humanities and Glasgow Goes Green Festival, I have taught regular workshops and led courses on areas such as dream ecologies, the everyday, refusal and failure, experimental journaling, entanglement, poetry and pop music, trash poetics, weather and postcapitalist desire. I am also a poet, artist, essayist, music journalist and editor, working between lyric, long-form and traditional forms such as sonnets, sestinas and ‘the commonplace book’. My work as a writer, critic and collaborator has been highlighted in places such as It’s Nice That, Scottish Contemporary Artists Network, BBC Radio 3, The White Review, Dazed, The Skinny and The Poetry Project. My poem ‘Ariosos for Lavish Matter’ was highly commended in the 2020 Forward Prize and a piece of creative-critical response to the work of Etel Adnan, Tangents, was long-listed for the Ivan Juritz Visual Arts Prize. My pamphlet, Polychromatics (Legitimate Snack, 2021), was shortlisted for the Saltire Society’s Calum Macdonald Award.

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I teach creative writing at undergraduate and postgraduate levels.

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Research Interests

My work spans research and practice. I am a member of the art and ecology collective A+E and editor-in-chief of SPAM: a post-internet poetry journal, magazine, podcast and press. In my capacity as artist and editor, I am passionate about collaboration, multimedia forms, public engagement, design communication and publishing. These aspects inform my expansive academic interests, which hinge on the question: how does literature and culture respond to, and intervene in, environmental crisis and technological change? My doctoral work addressed the contested term ‘anthropocene’ by developing a practice of ‘hypercritique’: a performance of im/possibility, attunement and hold within conditions of mass extinction, Covid-19 and climate breakdown. 

I am the author of several books and pamphlets including nature sounds without nature sounds (2019), Rainbow Arcadia (2019), Infra·structure - with Katy Lewis Hood (2020), Chlorophyllia (2020), neutral milky halo (2020), Sonnets for Hooch - with Mau Baiocco and Kyle Lovell (2021), Soft Friction (2021), The Luna Erratum (2021) and String Feeling (2022). My second poetry collection, Visions & Feed, is forthcoming from HVTN Press. With Rhian Williams, I co-edited an anthology, the weird folds: everyday poems from the anthropocene (2020), featuring poets such as Vahni (Anthony Ezekiel) Capildeo, Samantha Walton, Rebecca Tamás, Daisy Lafarge and Sascha Akhtar. My work has been widely anthologised and I have worked with musicians including Lanark Artefax, North Sea Dialect and Zoee. An exhibition with Jack O’Flynn and Katie O’Grady, The Palace of Humming Trees, was shown at French Street Studios, Glasgow in 2021.  

Currently, I am working on two book-length works of creative-critical study, and writing articles on the post-internet sonnet, lyric solarity, commoning and dreams. I am interested in pop culture, blog cultures and the internet, attention and affect in everyday life, dream theory and the politics of rest and play, Web 2.0, artificial intelligence, speculative aesthetics, small press and zine publishing, environmental and energy humanities, feminism and queer studies, technology and literature, new materialism, Romanticism, Modernism and poststructuralism. Broadly, my research covers contemporary Anglo-American poetry and poetics — from the post-internet scene of twenty-first century literature to innovative Language poetries of the twentieth century — in relation to theory and culture. Some examples of writers I have worked on include: Bernadette Mayer, Anne Boyer, Fred Moten, Jackie Wang, Rachael Allen, Eleanor Perry, Ben Lerner and Tom McCarthy.

I am due to deliver a three-year series of AHRC National Portfolio Grant-funded ecopoetics in associated with the87press in 2023-2025. Currently I am project leader on Brilliant Vibrating Interface: Queering the Post-Internet through Poetry and Practice - a year-long series of workshops, podcasts and editorial features leading up to a book-length publication and digital exhibition (funded by the Edwin Morgan Trust's The Second Life Award). I am also co-editing with Aaron Kent an anthology of poetry in response to the band Frightened Rabbit.

Professional Activities

Playing the essay: feminist approaches to interactive writing
Somnolent Cartographies: The Sonic Ecologies of Sleep
Performing your research: a poets theatre workshop
Poetry & Food workshop
Passage Journal (Journal)
Peer reviewer

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Brilliant Vibrating Interface: Queering the Post-Internet through Poetry and Practice
Sledmere, Maria (Principal Investigator) Dunlop, Kirsty (Co-investigator) Hill-Woods, Alice (Co-investigator) Jung, Loll (Co-investigator)
Taking our cue from Edwin Morgan’s assertion that ‘Poetry is a brilliant vibrating interface between the human and the non-human’, this project traces the liquid pixels, folds and veils of various kinds of interface: from language to the ever-present digital screens of our lives. Uniting several concerns of Morgan’s own writing – queerness, experiment, hybridity and technology – Brilliant Vibrating Interface offers a dynamic and multiplatform series of creative outputs and community events based online and in Glasgow. We will investigate, publish and spark conversation around queer literary experiments in the digital age; in turn, expanding the canon to highlight the work of younger, emergent writers. With emphasis on works which engage explicitly, in form and content, with the internet, we will host a series of podcasts, interviews and workshops, leading up to a book-length anthology publication and digital exhibition.

Brilliant Vibrating Interface highlights the continual influence and relevance of Morgan’s work as a proto-internet poet (who wrote code, computational and concrete poems informed by machines) by placing his legacy in direct conversation with digitally native (‘post-internet’) writers and artists – from Morgan’s instamatics to the Instagram poetry of today. At the heart of this project, we share Morgan’s passion for poetry in dialogue with the visual, with technology, everyday life, sexuality and gender. Expect workshops on glitch poetry, interfaces, the queer poetics of trash, multimedia, collage and procedural forms. Our research and interview phase will explore the media, process and tools behind post-internet poetry as well as its cultural contexts, offering insights into how and why poets are engaging with various technologies in their work. Together we’ll dream more abundant, queer and playful digital worlds through poetry. Envision the virtual world of Second Life colliding with Morgan’s 1968 collection The Second Life: that’s our vibe!
01-Jan-2022 - 30-Jan-2023

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Dr Maria Sledmere
Lecturer In English And Creative Writing
Creative Writing

Email: maria.sledmere@strath.ac.uk
Tel: Unlisted