Our first virtual writer in residence is Thomas Heerma van Voss, one of the writers featured in Verzet, the Strangers Press chapbook series of New Dutch Writing. Thomas Heerma van Voss has published four works of fiction, including the novel Stern in 2013, and the short story collection The Third Person in 2014.  His chapbook, Thank You For Being With Us, comprises two short stories feature compelling, well-wrought characters who draw the reader entertainingly into their simultaneously hilarious and heart-breaking lives. The stories are translated by Moshe Gilula.

In April 2021, we will welcome two Belgian writers to Norwich as part of our exchange with Passa Porta. Els Beerten is one of Belgium’s leading young adult novelists. She has been widely translated and has received several awards. Her most successful novel is We All Want Heaven. During her time in Norwich, Els will be working on a coming-of-age novel about two young Italian boys in the wake of the Second World War. The story is set in Belgium, Italy and England. Els plans to explore the traces of war along the Norfolk coast, and would like to spend time listening to locals’ stories.

Sylvie Marie is the author of four poetry collections: Zonder (Without), Toen je me ten huwelijk vroeg (When you asked me to marry you), Altijd een raam (Always a window) and Houdingen (Positions). She co-authored the football novel Speler X (Player X). She has won several poetry slams and likes experimenting on stage and interacting with the audience. Translations of Sylvie Marie’s poetry by Richard Berengarten will appear in Shearsman 125 / 126 in October 2020. During her residency, Sylvie will be working on #grampoems, new poetry and translations of her work into English

Later in 2021, the poet and playwright Claudine Toutoungi will spend a month at the Passa Porta International House of Literature in Brussels. Claudine’s poems have appeared widely including in Poetry Chicago, .PN Review, The Guardian, The Spectator and The Financial Times. Her debut poetry collection Smoothie was published by Carcanet in 2017 and her second poetry collection is forthcoming in 2020. Her plays have been produced in a range of theatres and on Radio 4.


Also in 2021, Penny Boxall will go on a return visit to Estonia as part of our residency exchange with Tartu UNESCO City of Literature. Penny will have the opportunity to take part in the Tartu International Literary Festival Prima Vista, an annual 6-day festival bringing together more than 40 writers from Estonia and abroad.