Upcoming Events

SWC members are entitled to FREE admission for all events, masterclasses, and workshops.



Tuesday 21, November 2017: CCA: Club Room at 7:00pm

VENUE:  CCA: 350 Sauchiehall Street, Glasgow, G2 3JD

International Event

Poetry House – Adapting Poetic Text for the Big Screen

Poetry House Event1

In partnership with the Rimbaud and Verlaine Foundation and GoodDog theatre company the Scottish Writers’ Center is hosting an international event presenting two contemporary and dynamic short films inspired by Europe’s greatest poets, based on original writing, film-making and theatre performance.  The screenings will be accompanied by short talks exploring the pleasures and challenges of adapting poetry and theatre texts for cinema.

Poetry House is a 40-minute film presenting 7 short dramatic scenes revolving around the lives of seven European poets and their relationships with the places where they lived.  Characters include the Spanish poet, Federico Garcia Lorca, the Icelandic poet, Halldór Laxness, and the French poets, Arthur Rimbaud and Paul Verlaine.  Originally commissioned as a theatre show by the Rimbaud and Verlaine Foundation and performed by actors from the GoodDog theatre company, Poetry House was adapted by Robin Boreham for cinema and shot by film makers from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland at the Tron theatre in Glasgow, in May 2017, and features an original score by Glasgow-based violinist Kate Young.

The Last Song of Lucan is a 15-minute short film based on Charles Baudelaire’s collection of prose poems Le Spleen de Paris.  An afflicted artist seeks redemption within the contradictions of modern urban life.  Shot in forgotten pockets of Paris and London, making sets from abandoned warehouses and empty squares, the film is a surreal piece – at once literary, cinematic and theatrical.  This piece was commissioned by, and features, actors from the GoodDog theatre company in November 2015 and also features an original score by percussionist Jamie Misselbrook. It includes short talks and will be followed by a Q&A session from the directors, focussed on the practice of writing and adapting for the screen.

Olivia Rose is a physical theatre performer and theatre-maker living in London.  Alongside Ryan Kiggell she adapted, directed and edited, The Last Songs of Lucan, as well as being performance director for Poetry House.  Olivia is Co-Artistic Director of GoodDog theatre company.

Robin Boreham is a director and screenwriter currently studying film production at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.  She adapted the original theatrical script and directed the filming of Poetry House in Glasgow.  Robin has a background in writing for short film and finished her original script this year. Hosted by the Scottish Writers’ Centre in Partnership with the Rimbuad Verlaine Foundation:  www.rimbaudverlaine.org and GoodDog theatre company: http://www.gooddogtheatre.com/.

 Admission £6/£3 (Concession).  FREE to SWC Members


Tuesday 5, December 2017: CCA: Club Room at 7:00pm

VENUE:  CCA: 350 Sauchiehall Street, Glasgow, G2 3JD

‘The Dark Side of Reality’ with Jean Rafferty

“The true artist is interested in the art object as an art process, the thing in being, the being of the thing, the struggle, the excitement, the energy, that have found expression in a particular way. The true artist is after the problem. The false artist wants it solved (by somebody else.)”                                                                    

Jeanette Winterson

Jean Rafferty 1Jean Rafferty‘s first two works of fiction were both nominated for literary prizes. Myra, Beyond Saddleworth, a fiction based around Myra Hindley, was shortlisted for the inaugural Gordon Burn award, while The Four Marys, her collection of four novellas, was longlisted in the 2015 Jerwood Fiction Uncovered awards.

Rafferty’s previous incarnation as an award-winning journalist led her into uncomfortable territory – prostitution, suicide, and torture were just a few of her subjects. She has been at the end of the world with a cult in Ukraine and at what felt like it in Goma, when a million refugees from the Rwandan genocide of 1993 ended up in camps there.

Her fiction continues to explore the dark side of reality – The Four Marys features shape-shifting, baby-snatching, infanticide and a hanging, while the choice of Myra Hindley as a topic for fiction brought opprobrium down on her.

This type of subject matter poses particular problems for the writer. Does a sensational subject require sensational treatment? Just because a thing is real does it feel true in a work of fiction?  Through readings from her work and discussion, Rafferty will explore the process of using real life in fiction. For more information: www.jeanrafferty.com

Admission £6/£3 (Concession).  FREE to SWC Members


Tuesday 19, December 2017: CCA: Club Room at 7:00pm

VENUE:  CCA:  350 Sauchiehall Street, Glasgow, G2 3JD

‘Have Yourself A Literary Christmas’

with Guest Writer, Jim Ferguson

It’s the most wonderful time of the year!  And, at the SWC we’re getting ready to rock around the Christmas tree with readings from our Members. The spotlight is on guest writer, Jim Ferguson.  Please join us and bring along something to read, perform, or slam and share the season’s festivities.  We’re going to make it an evening to remember!!!

Dust of those works in progress and put on your best prose for a night of literary readings, and creating – perhaps even utilising audience contributions. Join us for an evening of shared writing experiences with Glasgow writer, Jim Ferguson in a Speakeasy-style open mic night!

Jim Ferguson 3Jim Ferguson is a poet and prose-writer based in Glasgow. Publications include the novel ‘Punk Fiddle’, poetry pamphlets ‘My Bonnie Scotland’ and ‘Songs to Drown a Million Souls’: and diary-style musings on the Scottish independence referendum campaign of 2014 entitled ‘The Pine-Box-Jig Involves no Dancing’. A review in ‘Northwords’ of his poetry cd ‘More than Quirky’ states: ‘Ferguson’s strong Glaswegian accent is striking and his voice is forcefully expressive, most particularly when reading words and phrases from the Glaswegian dialect… In all poems there is a conviction in the reading, at times both poignant and haunting.’ He works as a Creative Writing Tutor at Glasgow Kelvin College (Easterhouse Campus). Jim recently launched his latest publication, For Eva: Selected Poems 1990 -2016 (2017)  For more information on Jim:  www.jimfergusonpoet.co.uk.

Calling all writers, join us for a taste of Scotland’s new and emerging writers and the best of new literature in action.  We’re currently seeking submissions from writers to read their work.  Submissions will be accepted at info@scottishwriterscentre.org.uk with ‘Christmas’ as a subject line.  An SWC member of staff will contact you to set up your time slot.

This is a Free Event for All

The SWC is a registered Charity, SCO40823.  We welcome donations to help us bring future events to you.


Ten Feet Tall:  Celebrating 10 Years of Contributions to Arts & Culture

Tuesday, 16 January 2018: Club Room at 7:00pm

VENUE:  CCA:  350 Sauchiehall Street, Glasgow, G2 3JD


‘TEN Slavonic Dances’ with Tom Hubbard

Tom Hubbard will be performing short extracts from his book of three short stories / novellas Slavonic Dances, (2017) together with a selection of poems / translations relating to east-central European countries. Hubbard will explore how we as writers can use a blend of cultures – even better, a clash of cultures (for all art thrives on conflict and contrast) – to unblock our imaginations and set us on our way.

His stories concern Scottish characters encountering east-central Europe, with results that are variously comic and tragic, ludicrous and lyrical – i.e. ambiguous: A Scotswoman marries a Polish soldier with a dark past; a Scottish-Czech couple are separated by the traumatic events of August 1968 in Prague; a Glaswegian poet and singer are enthused by Russian music. Each poem is a Polish take on Romeo and Juliet; wee Czech frogs being taught astronomy by their grotesquely inept teacher; a Hungarian dad soothes his baby daughter; a Russian mermaid is confronted by a prince who assumes a certain sexual entitlement. In using conflict and contrast, Hubbard exposes how two characters opposing each other creates a scenario that can generate and animate a story.

The ‘dances’ in Hubbard’s title – nicked from music by Dvořák – is partly ironic and nearer to a witches’ sabbath than to innocent small-town frolics or yer auntie’s 60th birthday bash. Hubbard is a champion of irony and its equally weird and wicked sibling, ambiguity, to say one thing and also mean its opposite, and packing the maximum of meaning into the minimum of words. Performance Techniques: Hubbard will discuss how readings can be enhanced with the use of simple props. He experiments with papier-mâché heads, partly inspired by east European theatrical traditions involving marionettes and mannequins.

tom souriant en suisseTom Hubbard is a novelist, poet and former itinerant academic whose second novel, The Lucky Charm of Major Bessop, (2014); readers are still working out the teasing clues in this ‘grotesque mystery of Fife’. His other works of fiction are the novel Marie B. (2008), based on the life of the late-nineteenth century painter Marie Bashkirtseff, and, more recently, Slavonic Dances (2017), a set of three linked novellas based on the comic and tragic encounters of the Scottish characters with eastern and east-central Europe. His book-length collections of poetry are The Chagall Winnocks (2011) and Parapets and Labyrinths (2013), both Scottish and European in their scope and also published by Grace Note. Tom was the first Librarian of the Scottish Poetry Library and went on to become a visiting university professor in France, Hungary and the USA. He lives in his native Kirkcaldy.

Admission £6/£3 (Concession).  FREE to SWC Members


Ten Feet Tall:  Celebrating 10 Years of Contributions to Arts & Culture

The Scottish Writers’ Centre In Partnership

Tuesday, 30 January 2018: Cinema at 7:00-10:00 pm

CCA:  350 Sauchiehall Street, Glasgow, G2 3JD

‘Our Own Voices’: Writing Workshop I

In Our Own Voices Logo

“Our Own Voices” is a FREE writing and performance project that includes a series of workshops, performance events, and a publication – all designed to showcase original narratives by marginalized people living in Glasgow. Professional writers and dramaturges will mentor participants through developing, refining, and rehearsing their work, which will be presented at a series of community events in Glasgow. The project will feature the writing of both established writers and performers as introduction and bridge to the products of participants.

The workshops encourage creativity of expression and will generate new writings and performances from those in groups who have been labelled as “Other”, including: members of the LGBTQ community, members of the burlesque and drag communities, people stigmatized by association with chronic and terminal illnesses (e.g. HIV/AIDS), neurodiverse and differently abled individuals, and members of racial and/or ethnic groups with minority narratives.

Elaine Gallagher1Elaine Gallagher is a writer, screenwriter and poet; her interest is in speculative and weird fiction, and in the way that we each inhabit the same space differently depending on who we are. She writes about queer and transgender identities and is transgender. She is studying creative writing at Glasgow university; her film, High Heels Aren’t Compulsory, directed by Annabel Cooper and starring Jo Clifford, was shortlisted for the Iris Prize and is now available on Vimeo at https://vimeo.com/216998787


Victoria Shropshire2Victoria Shropshire is an ex-pat Glaswegian refugee, Victoria is completing a PhD in which her critical research and creative writing focus on the impact of inherited narratives on identity (re)construction, especially where queer and illness narratives intermingle. Victoria is currently completing her debut novel, a fictionalized memoir in which a derelict debutante struggling with chronic illness is rescued by Dobermans and drag queens.




RSVP to Book your slotinfo@scottishwriterscentre.org.uk

This is a FREE event for all


Ten Feet Tall: Celebrating 10 Years of Contributions to Arts & Culture

Scottish Writers’ Centre International Event

Tuesday, 13 February 2018: Club Room 7:00 pm

VENUE:  CCA:  350 Sauchiehall Street, Glasgow, G2 3JD

‘Ten Poems (Possibly) Impossible to Write’ with Richard Robbins


A beginning poet will direct a lot of energy toward finding a comfort zone—a stable place, a fixed position from which to write a piece that feels like the right size, draws from a familiar well, bears one’s unique vocal stamp, embodies a comfortable level of cynicism or hope, follows a familiar trajectory in the direction of epiphany.

For those who are no longer beginning, though, for those who expect to write over the long haul, reaching a point of competent self-imitation is not good enough. To quote John Berryman, as remembered by Philip Levine: “You should always be trying to write a poem you are unable to write, a poem you lack the technique, the language, the courage to achieve. Otherwise you’re merely imitating yourself.”

Robbins4brighter1Richard Robbins will discuss how important Berryman’s idea has been to his own writing development. Robbins will share ten poems by other poets—Stafford, Bogan, Olds, Ryan, Hoagland, Perillo, Levis, Larkin, and Meehan—imagining how each work might have rested comfortably before its author committed to writing the poem that was impossible to write. It is presumptuous, of course, to imagine the decisions that lay behind the making of a superb poem, but the exercise can be instructive. Robbins will offer up at least one of his own poems for examination.

Richard Robbins was raised in California and Montana but has lived continuously in Minnesota since 1984. He has published six books of poems, most recently Body Turn to Rain: New & Selected Poems (2017). He has received awards from The Loft Literary Center, the Minnesota State Arts Board, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Poetry Society of America. From 1986-2014, Robbins directed the Good Thunder Reading Series at Minnesota State University Mankato, where he continues to direct the creative writing program.

Tickets £6/£3 (Concession) FREE for SWC Members


Ten Feet Tall: Celebrating 10 Years of Contributions to Arts & Culture

Tuesday, 27 February 2018: Club Room 7:00 pm

VENUE:  CCA:  350 Sauchiehall Street, Glasgow, G2 3JD

Ten Sybils with Anne Scriven

From Greek Σιβυλλα (Sibylla), meaning “prophetess, sibyl”. In Greek and Roman legend the Sibyl’s were ten female prophets who practiced at different holy sites in the ancient world.

In the build up to International Women’s Day, the Scottish Writers’ Centre welcomes writer, Anne Scriven who will be discussing her creative approach to non-fiction.  The art of narrative non-fiction is the art of paying attention. In this session Scriven will discuss how she came to appreciate and practice this awareness and weave a text out of conscious gazing. It has been a journey largely contoured by the wisdom of women. Some of these women Scriven has encountered in lived reality, others she has met and may only ever meet, in their literary creations: Virginia Woolf ; Mrs Oliphant; Margaret Elphinstone; Kathleen Jamie …,  Each of these special women continue to offer teachings that, like the ancient Sybil’s, are sacred in their intent and passed on for interpretation. Drawing on my her published life writing Scriven will illustrate how the honing of her own words is helped and heightened by the sagacity of her own personal Sybil’s.

Anne Scriven 2Anne Scriven is a freelance published writer and currently holds a part-time position in a second-hand bookshop. She is also a former lecturer in Scottish Literature.  Her publications include narrative non-fiction writing:  Learning to Listen: Life and a Nervous Dog (Kilkerran: Kennedy & Boyd, 2013), Provenance: Tales from a Bookshop (Kilkerran: Kennedy and Boyd, 2015), Cadences: Notes From An Ordinary Life (EPD, Autumn 2017) and Poetry:  ‘Blythe’ and ‘First Day’, Glasgow Women Poets: A Collection, (ed., Murphy et al, Four-em Press, 2016), ‘The Swing of It’, Paisley Poems (Paisley 2021, Culture, Heritage and Events Fund, Autumn 2017).  Scriven is the Central Co-ordinator of the for Women For Independence, Paisley branch. She has chaired a public evening with Lesley Riddoch entitled ‘Stands Scotland Where It Did?’, (Paisley Oct 2014) an Open Mic evening ‘Women Building A Better Scotland’, (Paisley, Oct 2016) and a public interview with Mhairi Black, the return candidate for SNP, (May 2017).

Tickets £6/£3 (Concession) FREE for SWC Members

%d bloggers like this: