The Writers of Wales Database
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Short-story writer, essayist and poet. Winner of the Rhys Davies prize for short fiction. His work has appeared in London Magazine, the Observer magazine, Poetry Wales, Agenda, Outposts, Poetry Ireland, The Black Mountain Review (Ulster), Cambrensis, The Raconteur, New Welsh Review, Planet, The Salisbury Review, Cambria and many others. His winning Rhys Davies prize story, 'Mrs Kuroda on Penyfan', has been broadcast twice by the BBC, and with his essay Birdtalk, Nigel was also specially commended in the Professional Writer category of the BBC Wildlife Awards for Nature Writing.
Nigel worked as a daily newspaper sub-editor, reporter and feature writer and in the late 1980s succeeded Kenneth Loveland as music critic of the South Wales Argus. In 2010 he began reviewing poetry for Acumen and jazz for Jazz Journal. He also contributes regular features to Herefordshire Life magazine and blogs for Archant Publications' Great British Life website.
He has so far written two, so far unpublished, novels - Piersfield and Slow Burn - and a collection of his short stories, entitled Funderland, published in October 2011 by Parthian.
"…'Mrs Kuroda on Penyfan' is a compressed and perfectly-composed study of a Japanese company wife…"
David Callard, Planet
"…(Nomad) is so good that I am tempted to quote all of it…"
Jon Gower, New Welsh Review
With respect to Funderland:
"…This is Nigel Jarrett writing out of his skin. Here are vivid and vital stories that crackle like brushfire and ignite delight. What’s most impressive is a gift for making language seem newly minted, spruced up, washed by fresh rain. I read them with unbridled pleasure and unholy envy." Jon Gower
"…As a music critic by profession, Jarrett has a marvellous ear…in the collection's title story, the survivor of a big-dipper accident recalls the experience in slow motion detail…the stand-out story, 'Mrs Kuroda on Penyfan', is an enigmatic study…"
Alfred Hickling, The Guardian
"…Nigel Jarrett's stories take seemingly ordinary or innocent situations and gently tease out their emotional complexity. Both "Funderland" and "A Point of Dishonour" confound expectations superbly…In the former, a couple who are not a couple negotiate a weekend away and their suppressed feelings for one another, while in the latter, a woman challenges the notion that her great-grandfather, shot for desertion during the First World War, should be seen as a hero. Jarrett likes the hidden tensions in family situations: caused by the strange stepfather in "Watching the Birdie", for example. He's not afraid of unusual perspectives and his bravery is well rewarded in this unusual and sensitive collection."
The Independent on Sunday
Funderland and Other Destinations (Parthian, 2011)
Avallaunius (guest editor) (Journal of the Arthur Machen Society, 1987)
The Day’s Portion (co-editor) (Village Publishing, 1991)
Tilting at Windmills (contributor) (Parthian, 1995)
Signals 2 (contributor) (London Magazine Editions, 1999)
Mama’s Baby, Papa’s Maybe (contributor) (Parthian / Cambrensis, 1999)
The Penniless Press Reader Anthology (contributor) (The Penniless Press, 2009)