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News / Wordplay returns

Children's author and illustrator Debi Gliori at work in her studio.

SHETLAND’s Wordplay book festival is set to return in November after a one-year break.

The festival will take place between 16 and 27 November, with new Scottish makar Jackie Kay and children’s author Debi Gliori set to feature.

Between Islands writers Kevin MacNeil (Western Isles), Alison Miller (Orkney) and Roseanne Watt (Shetland) are also on the bill.

There will be a comic book “masterclass” with Edward Ross, who created the graphic novel Filmish: A Graphic Journey Through Film, while Mike McDonnell and Jonathan Wills will launch Bobby the Birdman, a book about Yell crofter Bobby Tulloch who became a well-known ornithologist.

Elsewhere at the festival, there will be networking events for local writers, novel writing workshops and songwriting classes.

Shetland Library will hold a range of free events, including school workshops with children’s author and illustrator Shoo Rayner, as part of Book Week Scotland, which runs from 21-27 November.

The full Wordplay programme will be unveiled on Friday (14 October) when tickets go on sale via Shetland Box Office.

Shetland Arts creative projects manager Cara McDiarmid said this year the event would focus on putting the word ‘Play’ into Wordplay.

She said the programme was full of “exciting” events, from “meeting incredible authors to a variety of workshops and lovely events for children and families.”

“We have events covering poetry, prose, songwriting, graphic novels, illustration, travel writing, island writing, film poetry and more, plus amazing showcases of local writers,” she added.

The festival has been put together by a steering group consisting of Bryan Peterson and Cara McDiarmid of Shetland Arts, Karen Fraser and Marghie West from Shetland Library, Jacqui Clark as Scottish Book Trust reading champion, SIC creative links officer Noelle Henderson, and Mary Blance from dialect group Shetland ForWirds.


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