Louise Welsh: writers and academics must work together…

Author Louise Welsh at her home in Glasgow
Portrait of Louise Welsh by Steve Lindridge of www.idealimages.co.uk
Thursday 24 September 2015 13.20 BST
The Guardian

‘The novelist is like a detective,’ says writer, citing Val McDermid’s collaboration on a course in forensic science as a model for understanding between arts and academia…

Novelist Louise Welsh made her professorial debut at Glasgow University on Tuesday with a call for collaboration across disciplines and institutions.

In an evening lecture entitled Sleight of Hand, the Art of Writing Fiction, Welsh, who was appointed professor of creative writing in June, said: “The potential for collaboration between writers and academics is increasingly recognised, resulting in fiction, poetry and music, helping the lay person to better understand and appreciate academic research.

Pointing to crime novelist Val McDermid’s recent work on a forensic science course with Dundee University as “a great example of how writers and academics can collaborate”, Welsh also discussed her own project during last year’s Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, the Empire Cafe. This well-received collaboration with historians, musicians and playwrights was the first full-scale cultural examination of Scotland’s role in the North Atlantic slave trade.

Read the full article on the Guardian website…

Bloody Scotland Announces 2015 Figures, Most Successful Year Yet…

Posted at 9:10PM Monday 14 Sep 2015

Organisers of the Bloody Scotland International Crime Writing Festival are today delighted to announce their most successful year yet, having issued 5884 tickets over three days, and to confirm that in 2016, the festival will run from 9-11 September.

Organisers of the Bloody Scotland International Crime Writing Festival are today delighted to announce their most successful year yet…

Authors like Martina Cole, Val McDermid, Ian Rankin, Ann Cleeves, Linwood Barclay, Arne Dahl and Peter May held court over five historic, atmospheric venues in the centre of Stirling during a packed-out, exciting and varied weekend (11-13 September 2015). The opening Friday night alone attracted over 900 audience members for two events: McDermid and May in conversation, and Whose Crime Is It Anyway, a raucous comedy event hosted by Hardeep Singh Kohli in which authors Chris Brookmyre, Caro Ramsay and Kevin Wignall improvised a crime novel live onstage.

Sold out events this year included a session examining the infamous World’s Ends Murders, an event looking at the poisons Agatha Christie used to kill her victims, a session on how to self-publish your own books, and author events with Denise Mina, Belinda Bauer and leading Nordic writers Gunnar Staalsen, Johan Theorin and Ragnar Jonasson. The festival also took over famous Stirling whisky bar The Curly Coo for a night, with songs and storytelling from authors like McDermid, Brookmyre, Lucy Ribchester and Ian Rankin at a lively, fun and completely unprecendented late night session.

Read the full article…

Splinter the Silence review – chilling return for the queen of thrillers…

Splinter the Silence

Psychological profiler Tony Hall and ex-DCI Carol Jordan return in a timely investigation into online abuse

Lucy Scholes
Sunday 13 September 2015 14.00 BST

Val McDermid is back with her much-loved crime-fighting partnership, psychological profiler Tony Hill and ex-DCI Carol Jordan.

The case that reunites them is a chillingly timely one, focusing on online abuse suffered by outspoken women with a feminist agenda. This isn’t the conventional setup though: there’s “no forensics, no loose ends to pull”, not even a murder verdict to kickstart the investigation – just three seemingly unconnected suicides, each mimicking that of a famous writer: Sylvia Plath, Anne Sexton, and Virginia Woolf.

Read the full article on the Guardian website…

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