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ON THE ROAD HOME IT WAS SUDDENLY

New Writing Scotland 19

Edited by Moira Burgess & Janet Paisley
with Kevin MacNeil, Gaelic Adviser

Published in: Paperback.
By: Association for Scottish Literary Studies, Glasgow, April 2002.
Price: £6.95
ISBN 978-0-948877-47-6

Cover image: Holly Quinton



  • on the road home it was suddenly is out of print.

Last year was the first of my three as editor of New Writing Scotland. Moira Burgess, on her second, showed me the ropes. Half the submission arrives in spring disguised as a cardboard box, large. Divided by weight, the other half simultaneously chaps the co-editor’s door. It’s a daunting guest, settled heavily on thick haunches in the hall. The desire to read packs and leaves town. I prowl around it, taking weeks of deep breaths. Then I pounce and the marathon starts. Piles of Nos, maybes, ehms, and Yesses sprout on coffee table, carpet, floor. The yesses grow slowly, as do the nos. It takes at least two culls to produce the required long list. Now, the swop.
    I re-pack the box, nos at the bottom, maybes next, ehms on top. The yesses are stowed in a carrier. Bearing it, I meet Moira for coffee in Glasgow. With all the panache of spies in a cold war thriller, we casually arrive with one bag and leave with another. Once home, the reading starts again. This time we mercilessly reduce each other’s long list to a short list, all the time hoping that our partner in crime isn’t wantonly tossing aside our personal favourites from the first round. Just as summer arrives, I pack the car with initial submission box, those rejected from Moira’s long list and my short list. The neighbours think I’m off on holiday. Instead it’s seconds out at Moira’s place (tea, coffee, biscuits and cat, with the promise of a take-away tea when the bout’s over), and our stravaigin gaelic editor, Kevin MacNeil, as referee.
    We do not come to blows. All those Moira was ready to fight for have survived on my short-list. Those I would have battled to retain are on hers. We debate a few that hover on the borderline but by tea-time, we’re statisfied. More than. New Writing Scotland is the one annual showcase of the best in Scottish contemporary writing. It’s the flag of a healthy literary scene, with new writing from weel kent names alongside fresh voices and some first publication. Read anonymously, it’s without prejudice, unfair bias, favouritism or cronyism. Every piece has to be well-made, powerful, original and packing enough punch to win its place from a jostling crowd of contenders.
    Moira’s stint as editor ends with this edition. We had a lot of fun and some unforgetable moments. She’s due my thanks, for keeping me on track, for the hospitality and humour, the generousity of spirit and intellect. Oh, and the swansong. Volume 19. It’s a knock-out.

Janet Paisley
2002

Click here for information on submitting work to New Writing Scotland.

Contents

  • Margaret Beveridge..........Speedy Delivery – Verbal Estimate
  • Nick Brooks..........Jack Daniel’s The French Way
  • Paul Brownsey..........Public Figures
  • Tom Bryan..........Diaspora
  • Leanne Bunce..........western charm
  • Larry Butler..........The Story
  • Ron Butlin..........Under African Skies
  • Ken Campbell..........The Gurnie
  • Stuart B. Campbell..........The Burning
  • Michael Chromy..........My Last Day At School
  • Ian Crockatt..........Judas
  • Loren Cruden..........Winterkill
  • Criosaidh Dick..........Dileab
  • John Duffy..........Sweet Heart of Jesus
  • Magi Gibson..........sand / snowflake / robin
  • Rody Gorman..........Luath / Dealbh
  • Charlie Gracie..........Waiting / Dead on the Hill
  • Yvonne Gray..........Castle O Burrian / The New Ram
  • Francis Green..........Beautiful
  • Roddy Hamilton..........March of the Giants
  • George Inglis..........Some News
  • Gordon Kennedy..........passion
  • Ian McDonough..........Rainboy / An East Coast Seagull's Hymn
  • Morag McDowell..........Being There
  • Suzanne McGruther..........Skin Deep
  • Rob MacIlleChiar..........Duilich gu bheil mi fadalach -
  • Tony McLean..........Rule # 4
  • Anne MacLeod..........Johnny Depp is big leggy
  • Hugh McMillan..........Joe Baker's Boots / Summer in Dumfries
  • Iain S. Mac a’ Phearsain..........moladh teaghlaich / Ile
  • Nick E. Melville..........street seen
  • John Miller..........evening in the carpenter’s cottage / on the road home it was suddenly
  • Michael Munro..........Dancer
  • Donald S. Murray..........Language / Weaving
  • Stuart Murray..........Frank O’Hara Hits Haghill
  • Liz Niven..........Kosovo Sound Waves
  • Fiona G. Parrott..........The Strength of a Secret
  • Jo Ramsey..........After Birth
  • Jane Rawlinson..........Obsession
  • R.J. Ritchie..........Love Letter
  • James Robertson..........René Magritte in Embro
  • Laurna Robertson..........Archive: Budapest
  • Dilys Rose..........Milk Teeth 800 BC
  • Rosie Russell..........Poem for my daughter – 1
  • Steve Sankey..........Peregrine
  • Ian Stephen..........FISH-SOUP – a recipe
  • Edward Stranger..........streams entering Loch Lomond at Balmaha
  • Ruaraidh MacThòmais..........Criomagan / Guth
  • Valerie Thornton..........A Selfish Poem
  • Dawn Wood..........Likeness

Last updated 10 June 2014.