The Wigtown Book Festival

Saturday 3rd October  @ 6.00pm
Chrys Salt & Gerda Stevenson
Poetry Double
The Living Room

A pairing of two inspirational poets. Gerda Stevenson reads from her acclaimed collection If This Were Real, while Chrys Salt launches her fourth full collection Dancing on a Rock.
Sponsored by The Random Book Club
Tickets: £5.00
To book: Wigtown Book Festival Box Office. Tel: 01988 403222

A Creative writing workshop with Professor Bashabi Fraser

Sunday November  29th 10.30 – 1.00

A creative workshop with Professor Bashabi Fraser, Professor of English and Creative Writing at Napier University, a Royal Literary Fund Fellow based at Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh and Honorary Fellow at the Centre for South Asian Studies and the University of Edinburgh.
This workshop will explore how shared memories can trigger the creative moment when the personal becomes the germinal for creative expression in a public space. Bring paper and pen.
Cost £15.00 ( includes a light lunch)
Booking: 01557 814175 ( places are limited, first come, first served)

Bashabi Fraser

Saturday November 28th @ 7.30
Bashabi Fraser

Saltires 2015 Woman of the Year Professor Bashabi Fraser with hot- off -the press ‘Letters to my Mother and other Mothers’ (Luath 2015)
Acclaimed poet Bashabi Fraser performs poetry on the themes of motherhood, empowerment, love and loss. Drawing on her Indian and British life experience, Bashabi engages with hard-hitting current issues such as rape culture in India, climate change and war. A son questions his mother's love after she has learned about his violent deeds. The biblical Eve is shown as a liberator. A daughter of India demands justice from her society.

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Rab Wilson

Saturday October 31st  @ 7.30pm

Rab Wilson writes mainly in Scots and is an active supporter and advocate of the Scots language. His work is accessible and hugely entertaining and he has, in recent years, been recognised as a major talent.  
Tickets: £5.00
To book: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 01557 814175


Sunday September 27th @7.30pm
Donald S Murray
One Head, Two Tongues

Donald S Murray, from Ness on the Isle of Lewis, writes mainly in English but often thinks and finds inspiration in Gaelic. He discusses the effect that inhabiting two languages has on his work, drawing examples from his poetry, prose and writing for the theatre.
Tickets: £5.00
To book: Wigtown Book Festival Box Office. Tel: 01988 403222

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August 22nd: Donald Adamson

as part of the One Head, Two Tongues series
Donald Adamson Launches his latest collection

Saturday August 22nd 2015

Donald Adamson launches his new collection Glamourie (IDP 2015) – a fine collection from a poet at the height of his powers. Galloway people and places are prominent in the poems, which celebrate diversity. They embrace the ‘glamourie’ – enchantment – to be found in ordinary lives and in poetry. His poems are so firmly rooted in The Scottish landscape they appear almost self-seeded. The collection ends with wild bagpipe-led devilry, reminiscent of Robert Burns’s Tam o’Shanter, and an urgent plea for tolerance.

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Sheila Templeton
Sheila Templeton

July 4: Sheila Templeton

July 4 @ 7.30
Sheila Templeton writes in both Scots and English. A double first prize winner in both the McCash Scots Language and the Robert McLellan poetry competitions, she was also Makar of the Federation of Writers Scotland  2009 to 2010. Her two latest collections are Digging for Light New Voices Press 2011 and Tender is the North Red Squirrel Press 2013..... with a new full collection coming out next year also published by Red Squirrel.

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Christine de Luca
Christine de Luca (photo Dawn Marie Jones)

July 25th: Christine de Luca

July 25th @ 7.30
Christine De Luca, who writes in both English and Shetlandic, is a native Shetlander who lives in Edinburgh. One voice, two tongues & twin identities.  She was appointed Edinburgh’s Makar or poet laureate in 2014.  

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Bernard Kops
Bernard Kops

Bernard Kops - A Life in Poetry and Prose

Tuesday 26 May 2015 provided a rare opportunity to meet Bernard Kops, one of the great post-war Jewish playwrights, poets and novelists, at The Bakehouse.

He read his poems and from his acclaimed biography ‘The World is a Wedding’, and was in conversation with poet and director Chrys Salt MBE who has directed some of his plays for the London stage.

Just a few of the comments from our audience. Thanks to The Dumfries and Galloway Arts Festival for their support.

'What a treasure was Bernard!'

'I really enjoyed last night and was very sad to leave at the interval (he had me in tears with the Ann Frank)'

'Thank you very much for the opportunity to hear Bernard Kops yesterday evening. It was a great privilege to meet him and to be able to tell him how much I enjoyed "The Dissent of Dominic Shapiro", both in my youth and subsequently.
His talk was fascinating - and humorous. I loved his line about babies asleep with their arms raised:
"Why are they surrendering when they have already captured us?"

'Thanks for the Bernard Kops evening which we have talked about continuously. It was a really super event, full of memories of a wonderful wordsmith......absolutely loved it ! What a coup to get him to Gatehouse' .

.'...that was so good. Bernard really inhabits his work. Brilliant, so emotionally alive and Erica - the way they are a part of each other. We were all spellbound as we travelled from Holland to Hamlet'

Here he is reading his poem "Two Tall Ladies"

George Szirtes with Donald Adamson

Saturday 28 March 7.00pm for 7.30pm
George Szirtes was born in Budapest in 1948 and came to England in 1956 after the Hungarian Uprising. He is the author of some fifteen books of poetry and roughly the same of translation from Hungarian. He was joint winner, with Hugo William, of the Faber Prize with his first book, The Slant Door (1979) and has won a number of prizes since. In 2004 he was awarded the T S Eliot Prize for his book, Reel, and was shortlisted for the prize again in 2009 for The Burning of the Books and for Bad Machine Subsequent awards and prizes, including International awards for translation,  are too numerous to mention. George will be reading from his many collections.

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