RSS Feed Follow on Twitter! Follow on Facebook!

Guest Speakers 2013


Jean Rafferty 19 June

Jean Rafferty is an award-winning journalist and the author of Myra, Beyond Saddleworth, a novel which takes the premise that Myra Hindley did not die when the authorities said but was given a new life and identity. It was published in June 2012 by Wild Wolf Publishing.

‘A book that is both easy to read, and hard to read. Its exploration of the all-too-credible notion that de-humanisation is only human, is compelling and disturbing in equal measure.’ ~ Deborah Orr, The Guardian

Rafferty’s range as a journalist is wide, from gritty human interest stories to humour to celebrity interviews. She has worked for a variety of broadsheet and tabloid publications, from the Sunday Times Magazine to the Sunday People, doing lengthy magazine pieces on subjects such as torture, suicide and murder, as well as enjoying light-hearted comment for daily newspapers.

In 2007 she was shortlisted in the British Press Awards, a rare distinction for a freelance. She has also won awards for travel writing, medical journalism and comment as well as a Rowntree journalist’s fellowship for her work on prostitution.

Rafferty is the author of two non-fiction books on sport: The Cruel Game, about a year spent on the snooker circuit; and Ladies of the Court, with Virginia Wade, about 100 years of women’s champions at Wimbledon.

Eleanor  Yule  May 15 studied film at Glasgow and Bristol Universities making her first network drama Impulse for BBC’S 10X10 series as a student. Her second film for the Tartan Shorts scheme, A Small Deposit (1993) was nominated for a BAFTA. Her documentary work for the BBC includes the award winning profile of Scots psychiatrist R.D. Laing, a critically acclaimed ‘Late Show’ on the work of screenwriter Peter McDougall, and the BAFTA-nominated ‘Bookmark’ on writer Muriel Spark. More recently she has collaborated with Michael Palin to produce one-off television documentaries on the lives of Scottish painters. Her latest documentary was based on the life of Tove Jansson, the creator of the Moomins, which was broadcast in December last year on BBC Four.

Sophie Cooke May 15  is a novelist, short story writer, poet and travel writer. Her novels The Glass House (shortlisted for the Saltire First Book of the Year) and Under The Mountain are both set in the Scottish Highlands. Her short stories have been published widely in anthologies and literary magazines and broadcast on BBC Radio. She won the Genomics Forum Poetry Prize and has been long-listed for the Montreal International Poetry Prize.  Most recently she was invite to Beijing as keynote speaker at the Bookworm International Literary Festival on the subject “Style vs Content”.

Michael Malone April  24     – Michael Malone was born and brought up in the heart of Burns’ country, just a stone’s throw from the great man’s cottage in Ayr. He has published over 200 poems in literary magazines throughout the UK, including New Writing Scotland, Poetry Scotland and Markings. His debut novel, Blood Tears (published by Five Leaves, June 2012), won the Pitlochry Prize from the Scottish Association of Writers. He has since published a non-fiction work about successful modern-day Scots – Carnegie’s Call (Argyll Publishing, Oct. 2012). He is a regular reviewer for the hugely popular crime fiction website: CrimeSquad and his blog, May Contain Nuts .

J David Simons  March 13 – 

J. David Simons was born in Glasgow in 1953.  He studied law at Glasgow University and became a partner at an Edinburgh law firm before giving up his practice in 1978 to live on a kibbutz in Israel.  Since then he has lived in Australia, Japan and England working at various stages along the way as a charity administrator, cotton farmer, language teacher, university lecturer and journalist.  He returned to Glasgow in 2006 where he currently lives with his partner Sofia.

His first novel, The Credit Draper was published in May 2008 by Two Ravens Press and was short-listed for The McKitterick Prize in June 2009.  His second novel The Liberation of Celia Kahnwas published – along with a re-print of The Credit Draper – by Five Leaves Publishing in February 2011.

He has been the recipient of a Writer’s Bursary from the Scottish Arts Council (now Creative Scotland) and awards from the Robert Louis Stevenson Fellowship and the Society of Authors Foundation. His latest novel An Exquisite Sense of What is Beautiful is due to be published by Saraband in March 2013. 

STOP PRESS: Click on title to watch video preview of An Exquisite Sense of What is Beautiful

Sara Sheridan   February  13th – Sara Sheridan is the author of  a range of novels including The Secret Mandarin, Truth or Dare, Brighton Belle, I’m Me, and the Mirabelle Bevan Mysteries.

Shari Low    13th February – Author and columnist for the Daily Record. Shari’s wit and skill are displayed in her many novel including, Friday night with the Girls, Temptation Street, What if?, Why Not, My Best Friend’s Life and A Brand New me.

Barry Gornell    January 16 – Barry Gornell  is a debut author of  The Healing of Luther Grove.

Kirsty  Logan     January 16  – Kirsty Logan is a fiction writer, journalist, literary magazine editor, teacher, and book reviewer. She recently finished her first novel, Rust and Stardust, and a short story collection, The Rental Heart and Other Fairytales. She is now working on her second novel, The Gracekeeper.



Leave a Reply