Please click on the links to the right to find out more about Dave Alton's work featured on listenupnorth.com. You will also have the option to listen online or download it.
I started experimenting with writing poetry in my late teens, but it was during my twenties I began to develop my skills and aptitude for this medium. It was as a member of the Tyneside Poets in the 1970s that I had the experience of working with other writers, doing public readings and being published; the various members of the group went their separate ways in the 1980s.
I continued to have poems published in newspapers and magazines, as well as contributing to school anthologies. With Gordon Phillips I co-edited two collections of young people's writing under the title Don't Tell My Friends. Public readings continued in the manner developed by the Tyneside Poets of performing to community groups and in venues not usually used associated with poetry.
The 1990s saw a change of direction. Although I continued to write poetry, scripting pantomimes became a significant part of my writing. This evolved writing plays and it seemed for a while that it might become the major focus for me. However, poetry remained my primary medium in the first decade of the new millennium. Today I have teamed up once more with an original Tyneside Poet, Keith Armstrong, as joint editor of the blog "Poetry Tyneside (www.poetrytyneside.blogspot.com) which publishes contemporary poetry and examples from the archives of "Poetry North East".
I have recently formed links with the New Zealand Poetry Society and it is intended to include some of their work on our blog, with readings on listenupnorth.com later in the year. I am also a regular contributor of spoken ballads to the monthly podcast Folkcast (www.folkcast.co.uk) , developing traditional folk tales, many from the North East, into verse.