An Aberdeenshire writer and performer has been awarded the prestigious and “affa rare” position of the Scots Scriever residency.
Shane Strachan will be given the opportunity to explore the richness of the National Library’s Scots language collections through the post designed to promote Doric.
He will also be given the space and time to produce original work in the north-east dialect.
Mr Strachan has published fiction and poetry widely and holds a doctorate in creative writing from Aberdeen University.
Following the award of a Scottish Book Trust Robert Louis Stevenson Fellowship, Mr Strachan exhibited his spoken word project The Bill Gibb Line at Aberdeen Art Gallery, which celebrated the Aberdeenshire fashion designer.
He also facilitated creative workshops in communities and schools across the north-east, and published Doric Scots translations as part of Itchy Coo’s fairy tale collections.
National Library ‘delighted’ to share diversity of Scots language
His residency with the National Library of Scotland starts next week.
“I’m fair tricket tae be this year’s Scots Scriever,” he said. “Especially gettin tae promote the Doric o my hame region Aiberdeenshire tae folk that bide ere and aabody else online.
“Broucht up in the fishin toons o Fraserburgh and Peterheid, I’ve been spikkin Doric aa my life and scrievin in it for 16 years, sae it’s an honour tae haud this affa rare position wi the National Library of Scotland across the neist year.”
National Librarian Amina Shah said she is “delighted” with the progress made through the Scriever programme, showcasing the diversity and breadth of the Scots language.
She said: “Last year, Orkney Scriever Alison Miller’s exploration of new genres alongside championing Orcadian writing both locally and further afield celebrated Orkney as a stronghold of contemporary Scots.
“Now, with the appointment of Aberdeenshire Scriever, Shane Strachan, we are excited to welcome a fresh, dynamic voice to celebrate Doric as yet another facet in modern, vibrant and contemporary Scots writing.”
‘Shane Strachan is an excellent choice’
Head of literature and publishing at Creative Scotland, Alan Bett, said the position is a “rare opportunity” for a writer to be given support to create new writing in Scots.
He added: “Shane Strachan is an excellent choice, able to create work in a range of literary disciplines, the ability to tap into the literary heritage of the language and produce exciting creative work sure to connect with a broad contemporary audience.”
Frieda Morrison, chairwoman of the Doric Board and director of Scots Radio also commended Mr Strachan as the choice for the Scriever position.
She said: “I’m delighted to welcome Shane Strachan to the post of Doric Scriever. This is a great opportunity to develop new and vibrant projects and highlight the rich culture of the north-east.”
The 12-month Scots Scriever residency is funded by the National Lottery through Creative Scotland.