Sunday, October 16, 2016

My short reflective essay on last year's visit to Culloden is in the new Northwords Now and can be read here. It's my first tentative step into non-poetry writing and was a pleasure to write - a descriptive piece closely related to writing poems but communicating something that I couldn't get across in a poem.
I think I'll be writing more pieces like this alongside my poems - in fact I've already begun another
about my visit to the Mary Stuart's chambers in Holyrood Palace last week - an immensely moving place to visit (the chambers specifically, not the palace!). I wish I could have shut out all the other tourists and had the rooms to myself for a while.

So Madame Ecosse is forthcoming February '17 - last week I reordered the entire collection. Originally it was going to be in three sections but the selecting of poems for the first two sections seemed arbitrary with a number of poems, so then I put the collection into two sections - Garden Songs and The Birth Files - but even these sections niggled away at me.
I noticed with Tree Language (which was in three sections) that reviewers would quite happily ignore an entire section in reviewing the book. I guess I wouldn't like The Birth Files poems to be ignored - they are on a tricky subject after all - and I'm suspicious that relegating them to a section at the end of the book would cause them to be easily ignored.
I'm not entirely sure the new order is the finalised deal - I'll need a couple of weeks before I can objectively look at it again.

Like everything else - no readings for ages then they all come at once!
I'll be reading alongside J.O. Morgan, Vicki Husband and Em Strang at -

St Mungo's Mirrorball Showcase 5
Thursday 27th October
CCA Clubroom, Glasgow, 7pm

I'll also be reading at the third Dunoon Book Festival alongside Tariq Latif -

30th October 12.30 pm
Dunoon's Victorian Pier Building

I recently ordered The Literary Impact of The Golden Bough by John B. Vickery - a second-hand ex-uni library book that has clearly never been opened. It looks specifically at the influence of The Golden Bough on Yeats, T.S. Eliot and Lawrence. I can't wait until January when I can really get into my study of The Golden Bough and work out what kind of poem(s) I'm going to feed it all into.

Tuesday, October 04, 2016

Eyewear Publishing National Poetry Day Event!

Thursday 6th October is National Poetry Day

I'll be reading at the Scottish Poetry Library in Edinburgh from my forthcoming collection, Madame Ecosse, alongside Eyewear poets Paul Deaton, Terese Svoboda, and believe it or not, George Elliott Clarke - the Poet Laureate of Canada!!

Here are more details about the reading from the Scottish Poetry Library website -

National Poetry Day event: Eyewear Publishing

Since 2012, Eyewear Publishing has been discovering and publishing interesting new poets from across the UK and overseas. Join us in welcoming four of their freshest voices, including Scotland’s own Marion McCready, one of the country’s fiercest and most original voices; George Elliott Clarke, Canada’s Poet Laureate; Paul Deaton, whose poems have appeared in The Spectator and PN Review; and Terese Svoboda, American poet, novelist, librettist and translator.


6 October 2016 - 6:00pm - 7:30pm


Scottish Poetry Library


£7 (£5)

How to book

Buy a ticket in person at the SPL or via Eventbrite.

Contact for further details

Email or call the SPL on 0131-557-2876.