Kenneth Steven Advises Poets to Take Sanctuary

GE DIGITAL CAMERAIn a quiet corner within Skeabost Country House Hotel, on April 28, poet/writer, Kenneth Steven, told a group of poets to find what he calls ‘cloister time’:  ‘To be able to write in a totally unselfconscious way, it is best to have untrammeled time. Establish a place of quiet. Take the time–draw on the time you are most inspired, as a lark or owl.’


Can you call yourself a poet if you haven’t been published? ‘Many poets choose not to publish.’

Kenneth applied in triplicate to the Writers’ Union of Iceland, and won a place to write in a cabin, in the ‘far reaches of Iceland’. His intention was to concentrate on Celtic Christian hermits, but the location was too isolated for his comfort. Instead, he stayed on, ‘near the hot spring activity’–a self-professed lover of these–where he wound up writing his novel, Glen Lyon.


The Reading Room books sales offer a varied selection of literature and other books at each monthly meeting, for bargain prices.

coracle Kenneth Steven

Kenneth Steven captured hearts with his gentle, contemplative nature and the beautiful poetry of his latest collection, Coracle.




Irene Ross and Debbie Roberts would love to have other committee members sitting here with them. Contact the Reading Room if you are interested in serving with the literary group.


Reading Room president, Linda Henderson, ran the AGM during intermission. After giving accolades to co-founder, past president and continuing organizer, Charlotte Johnson, and co-founder, supporter and novelist, Richard Neath, Linda re-capped activities of the past year. 

In 2015, the Reading Room  has already spotlighted some fine talent, with guest readers Pauline Prior-Pitt, Michael Westman, and our Baker Prize winners. On June 30, Ian Stephen will grace us with his poetry, writing and storytelling talents, and we will welcome Louise Welsh, in July. It was recently announced that our principal funders, Scottish Book Trust, will support eight Reading Room sessions for the next year. Toward the end of the year, the RR will partner with Moniack Mhor, for a special writers’ event.

Til next time, keep reading…




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