A Message from FWS Chair Jenifer Harley.


As we start 2021, I thank all Federation members for your support during the year we leave behind. In particular, I wish to pay tribute to our Board members below. To be effective as chair and deliver the many facets of our organisation’s work, I need a good team behind me. All of us are volunteers.

Publicity: Anne Clarke (Newsmail), Caroline Johnstone (Social Media), Sue Burnside (Website), work tirelessly to keep everyone informed of events, competitions and successes. We welcomed Sue in 2020 taking over from Ruth Aylett  who managed our website for many years. We are very fortunate to have such a committed team. My thanks especially to Caroline for her work on social media.

Competition: As well as this newsmail, Anne Clarke efficiently runs our annual Competition. Thanks to judges Finola Scott, Charlie Gracie, Sheila Templeton, Mary Ann Kennedy and Stephen Barnaby.

Minute Secretary: Howard Singerman, diligently organises and records our meetings and was instrumental in obtaining our charitable status. (SC049724)

Treasurer: Mark Wightman maintains our finances and we appreciate his steadfast commitment.

Anthology Team: Thanks to last year’s Team Lead Anne Connolly for an inspirational and productive contribution. Welcome to Janet Crawford, the new Lead for 2021. Janet is also part of our Events Team. Appreciation to Alan Macglas, Emma Mooney, Sheila Templeton and Neil Leadbeater too.

Events: Without a Co-ordinator for most of last year, the team had to pull together to ensure events took place. Marie Therese Taylor organised attendance meticulously for many years and is now taking a well-deserved break. Latterly, Lesley Traynor and Rose-Ann Fraser Ritchie became our temporary joint co-ordinators bringing their enthusiasm to a full diary of events this year.

Membership: Marie Therese continues as Membership Secretary with support from Anne Clarke.

Education: More thanks to Ailie Hunter (Convenor), Lesley Traynor (Young Writers) Marcas Mac an Tuairneir (Gaelic+Young Folk) for undertaking their roles and raising awareness of important issues.

Makar/Scriever: Our 2021 Makar, Jim Mackintosh, and Scriever, Leela Soma, are now in place and both are actively planning a great programme for 2021. Thanks to Finola Scott and Charlie Gracie who undertook these roles so wonderfully well last year.

Ambassadors: Etta Dunn, Anne Connolly and Marc Sherland are omni-presents, supporting and sharing their experience. Marc delighted us with his inimitable and amusing hosting at Tinsel Tales

Volunteer: Could you be part of our team to fill our volunteer vacancies to organise Events, become our Social Media admin, or provide support for our Anthology Team? We need folk to commit their time especially and you don’t always have to become a Board member. We are a great group and very supportive of each other. It’s no exaggeration to say many of us have become lasting friends throughout our association with the Federation. Contact me at dandj@harleycs.plus.com. Comments or feedback are always welcome too.  

Jenifer Harley, Chair

Tinsel Tales 2020

Members of the Federation of Writers( Scotland) enjoyed a wonderful afternoon of readings on Thursday 17th December 2020. The poetry and prose readings covered a range of topics from birth to death and everything in between, with moods from sad to joyous and ultimately optimistic. The event ended with an official welcome to the new Makar and Scriever, Jim Mackintosh and Leela Soma, and a message of celebration and thanks to the outgoing postholders, Finola Scott and Charlie Gracie. Thanks, too, to MT Taylor and Marc Sherland for their captivating compering and to Jenifer Harley for her gracious organisation. Thanks, too, to all of the contributors. It was noted that the virtual nature of the event ensured its inclusivity, another cause for optimism in these strange times.

Watch the event here https://youtu.be/FvEl62Yb6ZU

Happy Christmas and a wonderful New Year !

20 Words for 2020

Congratulations to the winners of the Scriever’s Challenge. Watch an interview with Charlie Gracie, the FWS Scriever and Ricky Monahan Brown, in which Ricky discusses his successful piece Black Heart and other aspects of his work.

The videoed interviews with other winners to be posted in coming weeks.

Ricky Monahan Brown and Charlie Gracie, FWS scriever

More here https://federationofwritersscotland.com/20-words-for-2020/

Makar’s poetry workshop

Finola Scott, our Makar, held the latest of her enjoyable poetry workshops as part of her virtual tour on Thursday 22 October 2020. Finola inspired and led the group to tap into their emotions and memories. Some lively discussion resulted with folk sharing their ideas. By the end of the workshop every poet attending had developed their own personal poem or reflection, one to read in the workshop and another to be developed in the future. Subjects ranged greatly from comfort, love, embarrassment, disappointment, reminiscence, wrong choices and even humour, involving all of the senses. What an abundance of talent we have amongst our members. Finola, thank you for providing such inspiration, the time flew by. And thank you to the contributors who brought so much to the event.

Patchwork Poem 2020

Here is the 2020 Patchwork Poem created by Andy Jackson, our 2017 Makar, from lines sent in by members.

A Federation of Writers Scotland Patchwork Poem for National Poetry Day 2020

See Andy’s reading of the poem at our Youtube Channel

Or you can download a copy here patchwork-poem-fws-2020-final-version-a3

Click to access patchwork-poem-fws-2020-final-version-a3.pdf