Tag Archives: Pushing Out the Boat

Rolling…

Busy weeks and getting busier. 

Elsewhere to Be, a collection of creative writing – fiction and non-fiction – I’ve been editing for the WORD Centre at University of Aberdeen has (finally) gone to the printers.  The writing was inspired by the lives and experiences of landless families displaced by the effects of agricultural expansion in the early to mid-nineteenth century.  Together they reflect on experiences of displacement, loss and recovery, of living on the margins and striving for better things, using the personal experience and imagination of present-day writers to explore the lives of those who made Bennachie their home during this period.  Written in English, Polish and Scots and skillfully translated by Beata Tschirch, the project was a great experience.  More information on a launch and where to get your copy as soon as things firm up!

Privileged to have my three-poem sequence, Lament for the Children, published in NorthWords Now Issue 41 in such good company.  The poems were written as part of the Pibroch project and inspired by Padraig Mor MacCrimmon’s pìobaireachd – Cumha na Cloinne.  The pibroch, Lament for the Children, was, indeed, central to the development of the show and collection – both of which are structured around the four ‘movements’ of that piece – urlar, dithis, suibhal and taorluth.

Poetry @ Books and Beans: Thursday 27th May

In the meantime, I’m actively looking for venues for Pibroch starting from July this year – and hoping we’re not driven back into lock-down.  An abridged version will feature as part of The Gathering in Stonehaven 23rd-25th July and I’ll be sharing some of the poems online later this month at Poetry @ Books and Beans: Thursday 27th May at 6.30 pm UTC+01.  Free and online.  Check out the Poetry @ Books and Beans facebook page for more information and links.  Will be joined by Sheila Templeton reading from her new collection – Clyack – and the usual enthusiastic line-up for the Open Mic.

And in the meantime2 , there’s still time to register for the online launch of Pushing Out the Boat 16 on Sunday 16th. Writing from around the world though with a North East flavour and a fine line-up of readers.

Return of WORD festival on the way.

Next week sees the return to the North East calendar of a dedicated literary festival with a great programme including some of my favourite contemporary writers including Eimear McBride, Leila Aboulela and Lemn Sissay.

Eimear McBride
Lemn Sissay

wayWORD runs from Wednesday 23rd September till Sunday, 27th, the new festival solves must of my ‘what will I do at the weekend?’ problems.

The festival has been devised and developed by students at Aberdeen University with support from festival director, Helen Lynch, but events are open to all, mirroring the style and emphasis of the annual WORD festivals hosted by the University until 2011. Great too to see the involvement of great local talent such as Mae Diansangu, Shane Strachan and Sheena Blackhall and space given to creative writing from across the region including work featured in Pushing Out the Boat and Leopard Arts.

Of course, in these times, most events are online so geography or lock-down status should be no issue. Register your interest in events at the site above and get it in your diary. Look forward to seeing you there.

P.S. Yes: I am reading in the Leopard Arts – Pushing Out the Boat event on Sunday evening.