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Felix Hodcroft
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B Y   T H I S   A U T H O R
Felix Hodcroft is a poet and novelist based in Scarborough.  He is renowned throughout Yorkshire for his passionate, animated style of spoken-word performance, particularly as one half of the ‘The Hull to Scarborough Line’, a double-act with fellow Valley Press author Sue Wilsea.

His debut collection of poetry Life After Life After Death was first published by VP in 2010, and was reprinted in a second edition in 2011.  His next publication was a novel, Lives of Lilo, pitched at 'young people from eleven to a hundred and eleven', which appeared in September 2012.  He is constantly working on new poems, and we can expect a second collection (the 'sophomore effort') within the next few years.

Felix has been an important part of Valley Press since the beginning, with his formidable editorial talents frequently called upon (most recently for Some Things Matter).  There are few significant moments in VP history he hasn't witnessed or advised on, and there is no author who has contributed more to our success.

Manchester-born, Oxford-bred, Felix gained degrees in English Literature and Applied Social Sciences, and spent a large part of his life working as a probation officer in Birmingham, Hull and East Yorkshire.  He has had a few other jobs too - including that of a gravedigger.
Life After
Life After Death
Felix's acclaimed debut collection of poetry, displaying an impressive control of language, narrative and character.  (read more)
(from Life After Life After Death, Valley Press, 2010)

On the first perfect dawn
after my death-day,
wake yourself early – you'll
need no alarm.
Tread softly through your garden,
breathe its perfumes, sip its birdsong
and wash your eyes with dew.
There'll be stillness, something
waiting, there'll be sunbeams melting mist.
There will be buds that gently ripple into
scarlet, snow and gold.
And is all this juice
just death's digestion? Yes!
And so, my love, are you,
come stretch your flesh-robed fingers out,
pluck the dense, bright air.
Remember how my soft touch felt?
It's here, it's here!

On the first fine weekend
after my death-day,
motor through the peaks –
you'll have to
map-read for yourself.
You'll find that cottage, by a stream,
we stayed – go in, love, rest till dark then,
if you switch off all the lights and music, step outside –
then stop.
You'll feel the night close up around you,
sparkling waters rill and purl as
time; breathes; out.
Now, wait till you are wholly swallowed,
wait – wait...

Now! Look up!
At the dazzle of a million furnaces
incinerating all we knew.
I'm not out there,
my only home's
in you, in you!

And what of every other day
after my death day?
Stumbling through the din and chaos,
your wings torn by neglect, your
beauty dulled with pain.
No garden and no starlit night.
What have I for you, now?
Reflections in a crowd.
Other eyes as green but fresher;
tiny, pointless acts of kindness;
someone, grieving, comforted,
if only for an hour.
Tiny drops of honesty,
little shreds of care – there,
in the dark heart of your grey world,
in the hour of your despair,
the truth that you and I
around you –

Photo by Marcos Avlonitis
Life After Life After Death
Lives of Lilo
his first owner onto the open sea.  From that day onwards, his fate (and survival) will be decided entirely by chance... (read more)
Lives of Lilo
Felix Hodcroft
Q U I C K   F A C T
Felix was at University with the late Douglas Adams, and appears briefly in Nick Webb's official biography of Adams as a disapproving reviewer of Adams' writing.

However, this doesn't give the whole story - Adams was Felix's assigned 'mentor' at the college, and apparently they got on famously.
First edition:
13th May 2010
Second edition:
25th November 2011
Lilo is a blue and red seaside accessory, blown from the hand of
14th September 2012