An A-Z of writers and poets on the Isle of Lewis. If you would like to be added to this list, contact email@example.com.
Iain Finlay Macleod
Iain Finlay Macleod (born 1973) is a Scottish writer from the Isle of Lewis. His first full-length play, Homers and was produced by the Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh in 2002. Macleod went on to work regularly with the Traverse theatre on plays such as I was a Beautiful Day and The Pearlfisher.
Other theatre work includes St Kilda - A European Opera, a multi-discipline theatre piece which was shown simultaneously in five countries (Scotland, France, Belgium, Germany, Austria) and at the Edinburgh International Festival in 2009.
Macleod is also a writer of fiction and is the author of several novels for the Ùr-sgeul project, published by CLÀR.
Anna C Frater
Anna C Frater is a Gaelic poet and scriptwriter. Her poetry has been published in various anthologies, as well as in two collections, Fon t-Slige (Gairm, 1995) and Cridhe Creige (Acair 2017). She was a scriptwriter and script editor on the Gaelic drama series Machair from 1994-98.
Photographer and poet Magz Macleod documents the beauty and character of her island landscape in both words and pictures. Magz has had her poetry published in various publications, recorded on CD, and performed live at the Stanza Poetry Festival. Her ability to see the whimsical and profound in everyday life is reflected in her work which can vary from subjects humorous, to the sensitive, and intense.
Photography is her passion; her love for her Hebridean heritage and its history radiates thoughout her written and visual images.
Kevin MacNeilwas born and raised in Stornoway and is an internationally acclaimed, multi award-winning author.
His books include poetry (Love and Zen in the Outer Hebrides, Canongate), aphorisms (Be Wise Be Otherwise, Canongate) and novels (The Stornoway Way, Penguin; A Method Actor's Guide to Jekyll and Hyde, Polygon; and the novel
The Brilliant & Forever. He has also worked hard to promote Highland and Scottish literature on projects that resulted in books such as These Islands We Sing: Scottish Islands Poetry (Polygon), Struileag: Cladach gu Cladach (Polygon) and Wish I Was Here: A Scottish Multicultural Anthology (Pocketbooks).
MacNeil has taught creative writing at various universities (Edinburgh, Uppsala, Kingston) and residential writing centres (Moniack Mhor, Totleigh Barton).
Donald S Murray
Native Gaelic speaker Donald S Murray is from the village of South Dell in Ness in the Isle of Lewis. He has published a number of books, winning the Robert Louis Stevenson Fellowship, the Jessie Kesson Writing Fellowship and a Creative Scotland travel bursary for researching a non-fiction book about the herring industry – Herring Tales; How The Silver Darlings Shaped Human Taste And History.
Other books incliude SY StorY; Portrait of Stornoway which like The Guga Stone, one of the Guardian’s Nature Books of the Year, was illustrated by Doug Robertson. One of his earlier works was shortlisted for a Saltire Award while his poetry pamphlet West-coasters - largely about the islands off the Irish coast - received the same recognition in the Callum MacDonald Memorial Awards. His non-fiction book The Guga Hunters, re-issued by Birlinn in paperback, is about the seabird hunting tradition in Ness while Weaving Songs was inspired by the Harris Tweed industry. (His late father was a weaver.) The drama production, Sequamur was his first full-length play and went on tour through much of Scotland. Produced by Proiseact Nan Ealan, it has also been performed in Ireland, London and the In Flanders Museum in Ypres, Belgium.
In November 2015, he was one of a number of Scottish writers – including William MacIlvanney, James Robertson and Jenny Fagan – chosen to represent the country at the Pisa International Book Festival in Italy.
RM Murray is from the Isle of Lewis. A native Gaelic speaker, he is a graduate of Glasgow School of Art. He is Founding Director and Head of Visual Arts & Literature at An Lanntair, Stornoway, where he also curates Faclan: The Hebridean Book Festival.
Ian Stephen was born in Stornoway and still lives there. Many of his projects across the arts have been collaborations. He sent messages from a North Sea crossing to a computer at the 50th Venice Biennale and his artists’ films were included in Running Time, Dean Gallery, 2009. His novel, A Book of Death and Fish was released in 2015. A selected book of poems 'Maritime' was released by Saraband in 2016. Waypoints: Seascapes and Stories of Scotland's West Coast was released in 2017.
Ian Stephen's website
Stornoway Writers Circle
Love to write? What has about 40 legs, drinks tea, laughs and writes furiously? Well, on a good Tuesday night, that's us. We're a friendly group of writers who meet weekly at An Lanntair in Stornoway. We're open to anyone over the age of 16, writing in any genre or style, and at any level of ability.
Stornoway Writers Circle
Peter has developed and delivered writing and talent development programmes in the creative industries for the last 15 years, with a background in journalism, newspapers, magazines, cross-media projects and fiction. He is a former newspaper Editor and Founding Editor and is the co-founder and Director of Emergents Creatives. Peter has extensive experience nurturing creative enterprise and talent across the Highlands and Islands and is also a talented musician working in radical and alternative genres of music.