The Melita Hume Poetry Prize is now in its 7th year, and has had a distinguished roster of brilliant poets to judge. Therefore Eyewear is honoured that the superb British poet Malika Booker is to be this year's judge.
Malika Booker is considered "a pioneer of the present spoken word movement" in the UK. Organizations for which she has worked include the BBC, British Council, Wellcome Trust, National Theatre, Royal Shakespeare Company, Arvon, and Hampton Court Palace.
Booker was born in London, UK, to Guyanese and Grenadian parents. Booker grew up in Guyana and returned to the UK, aged 13, with her parents. She began writing and performing poetry while studying anthropology at Goldsmiths, University of London.
Her first collection of poetry Pepper Seed was published by Peepal Tree Press in 2013 and was shortlisted for the Seamus Heaney Centre prize for best first full collection published in the UK & Ireland. She was the inaugural Poet In Residence at the Royal Shakespeare Company. Booker's poem 'Nine Nights', first published in The Poetry Review in autumn 2016, was shortlisted for Best Single Poem in the 2017 Forward Prize.
The Hume prize is for the best debut unpublished collection by an Irish or British resident or citizen aged 35 years or under at time of submission. Submissions will open soon.