Welcome to episode 137 of Sweetman Podcast with support from our sponsors – T Leaf T, Yeastie Boys and La Petite Chocolat.
I had a chat with Mary McCallum. She’s just published her first book of poems, the excellent XYZ of Happiness. But Mary was playing the long-game, she’s a known, established poet – having studied under Bill Manhire when his original poetry class was being established, long before the fabled IIML.
Mary is also a graduate of the IIML however.
She’s also a novelists, children’s author, journalist, broadcaster, songwriter, musician and publisher.
A chronic over-achiever in the arts.
Poetry is the love – the first love – and she’s realised that goal with the completion and publication of XYZ.
And so we caught up to talk through that – and her life; the love of words translating to several careers – including editing and publishing the work of other writers.
She heads Makaro Press and new venture, The Cuba Press. She is dedicated to publishing poetry (the excellent HOOPLA Series gets discussed during this chat) but also publishes short and long fiction, memoir, the works, ultimately…
Mary and I have met a few times, but this was our first long conversation. And we got right into it, her biography and beyond.
I loved this conversation.
Mary is also the mother of a previous podcast guest. I’ve had husband and wife guests on the podcast at separate times, but I think this is the first time I can say I’ve featured two generations within the same family. Mary’s son Paul works with her at the presses but is also a member of the band Into Orbit. He and his musical partner Ian were featured guests way back on episode 13 of Sweetman Podcast.
I hope you enjoy this big dive into all things writing, publishing and poetry…I certainly did…