Writing Workshop, Edinbane Hall, Tuesday, September 25, 7:30 p.m.
For a writing workshop, there is a rule worth tucking into your bag, along with notebook, pencil, eraser and water bottle: “Consider the source.”
With Gerda Stevenson as your evening muse, your little smiley button which assures You are Great! can rest in peace. This is a woman who will inspire creativity. She assures participants of her intent:
“I always think that the purpose of a workshop is to stimulate the writers through various exercises, so that they go away with a bank of new raw material ready to be honed in their own time.”
Our September monthly meeting will offer readers and writers the privilege of meeting with this lady, who has generated an incredible amount of art in her life. She was a Scottish Borders child. Trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, she has displayed her acting talent in many stage and television productions. Her performance in the film, Blue Black Permanent (Greta), won her the BAFTA Scotland Best Film Actress Award and she may have been one of the more convincing characters in Braveheart.
Gerda has commissioned and directed many programmes for BBC Radio Scotland, working with established Scottish dramatists such as Donald Campbell, Alan Spence, Janet Paisley and Anne Downie. We would know her voice from the long list of British radio stories she has read.
Her writing gifts seem to have no bounds. Along with her many radio adaptations, she is a visiting lecturer at the University of Glasgow, where her poetry collection, If This Were Real, and her stage play Federer Versus Murray are studied on the Contemporary Scottish Literature course. Her poetry and prose have appeared in the Scotsman, the Herald and New Writing Scotland. In 2014, Gerda was awarded a Creative Scotland Artist’s Bursary, to write her second collection, Quines, on neglected Scottish women. This outstanding 2018 collection (Luath Press) is kicking critics into attention.
In 2014, she was nominated as one of the Saltire Society’s OUTSTANDING WOMEN OF SCOTLAND. She has run many acting, writing and story-telling workshops in schools and drama colleges across Scotland. If anything can lure you to this workshop, The Thomas Muir Lecture 2018 video will show you what you don’t want to miss!
Everyone is welcome to join the Reading Room on Tuesday, September 25, 7:30 p.m., at Edinbane Community Hall. There is no admission fee and no preparation is required. This evening is dedicated to enjoying Gerda’s inspirational presence and to relaxed enjoyment and appreciation of the art of writing. Committee member Debbie Roberts, will host the event.
Some of the Reading Room group will meet in the Edinbane Inn pub, for dinner and pre-event camaraderie. All are welcome to join in, at 6-ish.
On Wednesday, September 26, Gerda will be interviewed by Simon Clayton, on his Cuillin FM show, Simon Clayton’s Ever Changing Moods, airing between 10 am-12 noon.
For information regarding this event or the Reading Room, we can be contacted at email@example.com or on Facebook: Reading Room – Skye.
Nurse Ratchet might have sent Harry Gallagher downstairs for irreversible treatment but his electrical poetry and delivery threaten only to send thrills down spines. He is The People’s Poet, who performs up and down the UK, sharing his rhyme and rhythm penned for anyone who touches his heart – and it must be big and tender, because he is champion of so many, with his words that cut, bruise and soothe.
Write in Tuesday, July 10, with a big scratchy star, to see Harry and hear a lot of super poetry by him and participants of our Open Mic, at the intimate Edinbane Community Hall, 7:30 p.m.
Harry is described by poet and Black Light Engine Room Press editor, p.a. morbid, as a “truly wonderful troubadour of the everyday”, for his latest collection, How it is – Snapshots From a Northern Town (Stairwell Books, 2018).
Stunningly beautiful one second, brutal the next. He gets to the guts of what it means to be a modern human.”
Robert Francis, poet and host of Permission To Speak event, Stourbridge
In his poem, “Bevin Boy”, Harry illustrates why his work is considered a love letter to the people from the North East of England:
No bloody medal for you,
just backbreak and slack
that seeped through your lungs,
laying the eggs of the wheezes
that you always knew
would oneday sing you to sleep.
Harry Gallagher lives and writes on the North East coast. His work has been widely published by, among others, The Stare’s Nest, Black Light Engine Room, Lucifer Press, Rebel Poetry, The Fat Damsel, Material, Alliterati, Dead Snakes, Write Minds and Clear Poetry. He is co-founder of The Stanza, a monthly poetry night in Newcastle upon Tyne.
There will also be an opportunity for local writers to share their work in 5-minute slots during the Open Mic session. Please sign up with Francis Mitchell when you arrive or contact the Reading Room at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Entrance is free for participants and members; £3 for non-members/non-participants. Tea, coffee and treats are served. Everyone is welcome. There is some parking at the hall and more on the street. Some of us stop into the Edinbane Inn for dinner around 6 p.m. Please feel free to join us.
We can be contacted at email@example.com or on Facebook: Reading Room – Skye.
…and she is bringing her varied talents to the Reading Room this month, giving a talk illustrated by readings along the lines ‘From Saxons to Surrealism’, charting her development as a poet.
She is a poet but is also a judge of poetry. This means to me that she is someone who understands what it takes to create fine poesy and who also can take us as writers to another level from simply writing poetry, to recognizing what will be meaningful to others – is our writing universal?
As a translator, A.C.Clarke is interested in the discipline of language and in getting inside the skin of the translated poet. Her penchant for gaining the perspectives of others also is gratified by writing about marginalised and historical figures like the ‘wild girl of Champagne’, ‘Wild Peter’ and Helen Duncan (the last person in the UK to be tried for witchcraft). Her fifth collection of poems, A Troubling Woman (Oversteps Books, 2017), is centred on the life of the medieval visionary Margery Kempe and serves as a companion to her poem collection about the atheist priest Jean Meslier, Fr Meslier’s Confession. Both examine the various aspects of belief and doubt.
The poet has been involved for several years in ‘polishing’ poems and short stories by Romanian writers. Her poems have been translated into Romanian (most recently in the new Anthology of Scottish Poets, Diehard Press 2016) and into Albanian, Arabic, German and Italian. She has experience of working with refugee poets and is also a qualified Further Education teacher.
A.C. Clarke moved to Scotland in 2002, after retiring from teaching and university administration. At that time, she began taking her writing more seriously and since then, the world of poetry has been acknowledging her work. She has been regularly published and invited to appear at events in Scotland. Her work has been awarded, commended, long-listed and short-listed regularly since 2004. She was Makar for the Federation of Writers (Scotland) 2007-2008 and is an active member of Scottish PEN.
Most recently, Owersettin, a pamphlet in English, Scots and Gaelic in collaboration with Maggie Rabatski and Sheila Templeton, was published by Tapsalteerie in 2016. She was one of four joint prizewinners in the 2017 Cinnamon Poetry Pamphlet Competition and her winning pamphlet, War Baby, was published by Cinnamon Press early in 2018.
She is currently working on a harebrained scheme to translate all of Paul Éluard’s poems (at least 1,000) before she dies! and on an ever-expanding series of poems about his first wife Gala (Dali) and the Surrealist circle.
Please join the Reading Room for our Tuesday, June 26 meeting at Edinbane Hall, at 7:30 p.m., and welcome A.C. Clarke for an evening of poetry and inspiration.
Admission for non-members is £5. Everyone is welcome. Refreshments will be served and our Good Reads table will be available for perusal and purchase of new and used gems.
For information on events and our reasonably-priced! memberships, please contact us via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Facebook: Reading Room – Skye.
Please note Rody Gorman is unable to be here but all else is a go! Come and enjoy an afternoon of refined and/or wacky writing at Aros on the Isle of Skye.
Local and visiting writers are encouraged to come and read. English and Gaelic are welcome and perhaps a song with lyrics you wrote. Duncan has requested that readers book their 5-minute slot if possible, via the Seall website The Reading Room 16th March.
On Tuesday, October 3, bring something to read while everyone enjoys the view – we make no promises but our emcee Francis Mitchell is optimistic that the weather is looking fine for the Reading Room’s earlier-than-usual event time of 4:30 to 6:00 p.m. – just so you can catch the sunset. Everyone is welcome to participate or hang back and be entertained.
There is no entrance fee but plan on some coffee or tea and scrumptious home-baked to support Renee and Shaun, who have enthusiastically jumped at hosting our Open Mic at Bog Myrtle.
The Bog Myrtle in Struan is next to Bracadale Free Church, on the A863, halfway between Talisker and Dunvegan, IV56 8FB. If you are looking for Bog Myrtle, you can reach Renee and Shaun at 01470 572 782.
For information, contact the Reading Room at email@example.com or message us at The Reading Room – Skye – Facebook Group.