Role Type
Salary & Hours
£12,000 p/a for 150 days p/a
London SE14 office and from home
Application Deadline
20 February 2020 23:59


Poetry London wishes to appoint a new Poetry Editor.

This is the executive role at the organisation, and we are looking for a strong cultural leader with a clear, ambitious creative vision who is a published poet with at least one full collection (either published or under contract).

Poetry London is one of the UK’s most prestigious and best-selling poetry magazines. Founded in 1988, it is published three times a year and enjoys a well-established reputation, publishing work from across the world, both in translation and, occasionally, in their original version.

We are resolutely international and are committed to a plurality of voices and visions; it is essential that the Poetry Editor shares and upholds this commitment and can bring in new ideas to move the organisation forward.

As executive editor of the magazine you will be responsible for developing and implementing the magazine’s editorial content and direction. Leading a team of five you will also run the mentorship scheme and annual competition.

You will have:

  • Thorough familiarity with contemporary poetry in the UK and elsewhere
  • Good standing and extensive contacts among poets in the UK and elsewhere
  • Evidenced leadership and management skills
  • Outstanding editorial judgement and literary skills
  • Good interpersonal and communication skills

How to apply

We welcome applications from a diverse range of inspiring candidates from all backgrounds, and will accept joint applications for possible job share.

To apply, please send your CV along with a covering letter of no more than 1,000 words, outlining your creative mission statement for the magazine and explaining why you are suitable to lead the organisation. Please supply the names and contact details for two referees.

Applications can be submitted by email to or posted to the following address:

Poetry London (Poetry Editor Application) Goldsmiths, University of London
New Cross
London SE14 6NW

Application deadline: 20 February 2020

Poetry London is an equal opportunities employer and encourages applications from all sections of the community, particularly those currently underrepresented in the publishing industry .

Please complete the equal opportunities form and send it to us along with your application. Completion of the form is optional, and all responses will be kept anonymous and in line with Poetry London’s privacy policy.

We apologise that due to the anticipated volume of applicants we will not be able to contact you unless you have been shortlisted, so if you do not hear back from us by 31 March 2020 please assume you have not been successful on this occasion.

Job Description

The Poetry Editor is the executive editor of Poetry London, with overall responsibility for developing and implementing the magazine’s editorial content and direction. Working in association with the Reviews Editor, supported by the Assistant Editor, and reporting to the Board of Trustees, the Editor takes a lead role in the management of the organisation.

The Editor’s main duties will be:


  1. Selecting the poems for publication in all issues of the magazine
  2. Working closely with the Reviews Editor and Assistant Editor to maintain the editorial standards of the magazine and continuing to develop its reputation for excellence
  3. Attracting established poets in the UK and from around the world to send new poems to Poetry London for consideration
  4. Developing the magazine’s reputation for seeking out new poets (Poetry London commits a third of its pages to poets who have yet to publish a first collection) by attending events and reading widely
  5. Organising, programming, and hosting Poetry London’s launch events, three times per year, in liaison with the launch venue Kings Place
  6. Overseeing the magazine’s annual Poetry London Clore Prize, including choosing and approaching a prestigious judge
  7. Nominating and entering poems for the Forward Prize individual poem category
  8. Receiving submissions for consideration (via post and Submittable), and processing those submissions, including their rejection and return, within a period of three months
  9. Preparing poetry copy for publication, including layout and proofreading, and paying the contributors appropriate fees, in liaison with contributors, the Production Editor, Design Editor, General Manager and the Assistant Editor


  1. Leading in strategic planning for Poetry London, in partnership with the editorial and administrative team, and the Board of Trustees
  2. Ensuring the magazine’s content reflects its policy and reputation for diversity and equal opportunities
  3. Advancing Poetry London’s role in widening participation in the culture of poetry in the UK
  4. Maintaining and developing good relations and contacts within the poetry community


  1. Undertaking operational and task management of the General Manager, Assistant Editor and the Digital Editor
  2. Sharing in organisational management with other colleagues and staff as required. Key relationships are with Chair of Trustees, General Manager, Reviews Editor, Assistant Editor and Digital Editor
  3. Attending regular Planning, Editorial and Board meetings in London, amounting to a minimum of 12 meetings per year
  4. Liaising with staff at Goldsmiths, University of London, to coordinate student placements and organise collaborative events with the magazine, as per the ongoing relationship between Goldsmiths and Poetry London
  5. Working closely with the General Manager, editorial and administrative staff, and trustees, to liaise with our core funder Arts Council England (ACE), and prepare submissions, as well as on fundraising applications and activities

Please Note: Poetry London does not have a budget for travel expenses. As such, all travel to meetings, or to events, will be at the Poetry Editor’s expense.

Person Specification


  • An established reputation as a poet, with at least a first collection already published or under contract
  • A creative vision for the future of the magazine with a strong emphasis on cultural leadership
  • Thorough familiarity with contemporary poetry in the UK and elsewhere
  • Good standing and extensive contacts among poets in the UK and elsewhere
  • Outstanding editorial judgement and literary skills
  • Good interpersonal and communication skills
  • The ability to work under pressure and meet deadlines
  • The ability to work with a team, including steering some meetings and encouraging other members of the team
  • Sound and practical IT skills
  • Knowledge of diversity monitoring targets and a commitment to the magazine’s ethos of diversity


  • Related editorial experience with another poetry magazine, publisher, or publication
  • Fundraising experience
  • Administrative experience
  • Organisational management experience

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