Rising star of Scottish poetry to visit islands

Reading for the first time on home soil since being awarded his 2011 accolades, South Uist poet Niall Campbell
Reading for the first time on home soil since being awarded his 2011 accolades, South Uist poet Niall Campbell

ONE of the rising stars of Scottish poetry is set to read in Portree, Lochmaddy and Stornoway next week – a tour that will see the Uist-born poet Niall Campbell read on home soil for the first time since winning the Robert Louis Stevenson Fellowship and an Eric Gregory Awarded earlier this year.

HI~Arts’ Writing Development Coordinator, Peter Urpeth, comments: “Niall Campbell is part of a new generation of poets from Scotland’s Islands whose work is both strikingly contemporary, of universal appeal, and yet which speaks from the place and community of his birth and upbringing.

“We are delighted to be able to bring Niall to the islands at this time, and to introduce a real rising star of Scottish literature to lovers of literature across the Hebrides.”

Born in South Uist in 1984, this year has seen recognition for Niall’s work explode with an Eric Gregory Award from the Society of Authors, as well as being awarded the Robert Louis Stevenson Fellowship.

Having originally studied English Literature at Glasgow University, Niall received an MLitt with distinction in Creative Writing from the University of St Andrews in 2009.

During the poetic tour, Niall will be joined by Uist based poet Pauline Prior Pitt and Lewis-born poet Karin Slater for readings in Lochmaddy, and by Karin in Stornoway in an event that is part of this year’s Faclan Hebridean Book Festival.

Pauline is one of Scotland’s foremost poets, appearing on Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour Pick of the Week, as well as on Channel 4, Central and Carlton Television, as she writes about the relationships between men and women, family life, the domestic scene, gynaecology, political issues, dresses, the ageing process, and love and death.

In her book ‘Storm Biscuits’ she write about the landscape of North Uist, where she now lives, and her one woman shows attract large audiences at festivals.

And Karin Slater, a poet and short fiction writer from the Hebrides graduated from the University of Glamorgan’s highly-rated degree course with a First Class Hons. in Creative and Professional Writing in 2006.

Currently building a poetry collection, Karin’s work has appeared in a number of publications, including New Writing Scotland, Northwords Now, Causeway and The North.

The Poet’s Tour will take part in the Isle of Skye Literary Salon, Isle of Skye Bakery, Portree on Wednesday, October 26 at 7.30pm; at Taigh Chearsabhagh, Lochmaddy, North Uist, on Thursday, October 27 at 7.30pm; and at the Faclan Book Festival, An Lanntair, Stornoway, on Friday, October 28 at 6pm.