Valeria Melchioretto has a degree in Modern Drama with Fine Art, an MA in Fine Art, and is currently working on a PhD at the University for the Creative Arts in Farnham. Over the years she has taken poetry courses with various tutors including Pascale Petit, Mimi Khalvati, John Stammers and Matthew Sweeney. Valeria has published poems in prestigious periodicals including Poetry Review, Poetry London and Ambit and has appeared in various anthologies. Her poems were translated into Arabic and appeared in Asharq Al-Awsat in March 2005. Her first small collection, Podding Peas, was published by Hearing Eye in 2004. In 2005 she was Highly Commended for the Geoffrey Dearmer Prize. Her  collection The Cloud Chamber will be published by Salt Publishing in June 2007. Read Valeria's winning poems.

Rebecca O’Connor’s poetry has been published in The Guardian, Reactions 5 and Poetry Review, where she was awarded the Geoffrey Dearmer prize for Best New Poet, 2004. She received a bursary from the Arts Council in Ireland to complete her debut novel He Is Mine and I Have No Other, and her short story The Mayfly was an award winner in the 2003 Virago/Marie Claire short story competition. She was a writer-in-residence at the Wordsworth Trust in 2005 (her pamphlet Poems was published by them in 2006), and has read at poetry festivals in Sweden, Slovakia and Slovenia. She has also edited a book of Irish women’s short stories called Scéalta, and is currently working on her second novel. She is represented by Greene & Heaton Literary Agency. Read Rebecca's poetry here.

Meryl Pugh was educated at Cambridge and the Institute of Education. In 2003 she was selected as a Jerwood/Arvon Young Poet. She has also collaborated with a photographer and the Museum of London on a project involving female young offenders. Her work has appeared in Entering the Tapestry (Enitharmon, 2003), Promises to Keep (Jerwood/Arvon, 2004), Reactions 5 (Pen & Inc Press, 2005) and various magazines, including Poetry London, Poetry Wales, Magma and The Rialto.  In 2005, she was awarded a Hawthornden Residential Fellowship. At present, she is working towards her first collection and a novel for teenagers. Read Meryl's work here.


Since being Commended in Ventures 2005, Sam Riviere has had poems published in The Rialto, taken part in the Aldeburgh Poetry Festival, and completed an MA in Poetry at Royal Holloway, receiving a Distinction. He is currently co-editing a new journal of emerging art and poems called Stop Sharpening Your Knives; visit www.stopsharpeningyourknives.co.uk.





Rebecca O'Connor, Valeria Melchioretto & Meryl Pugh