I always feel emotional when a year draws to a close. This year my normal melancholy is magnified in knowing that 2020 has been at the very least horrendous for everyone. For some, the impact of the pandemic has been crippling and overwhelming. Life changing. That sadness is weighting the sky. It can only hold… Continue reading Almost Then, Twins, Iron Women and 2021.
I'm delighted to announce that Linen Press has signed my second novel, Almost Then, and will publish it in early 2021. Almost Then belongs to twin sister and brother Rathlin and Breacàn Doherty. Despite their closeness, the twins have carved out lives in isolation of one other, having reacted differently to the same childhood tragedy. They… Continue reading ‘Almost Then’ to be published in early 2021.
We all need a wee bit of escapism now more than ever and books are one way to shut off from the world and delve into a different space for as long as you need to. It's really difficult to concentrate on creative projects at the moment so if you are finding it hard to… Continue reading Hear all about it on the @ReadAllAbout20 podcast.
When I was a child, dolphins were a world away from us, despite our proximity to the sea. On Rathlin Island in County Antrim, Ireland, we were blessed with bods of seals and the occasional excitement of spotting the jet black sheen of a porpoise briefly appearing from the dazzling seawater. Dolphins, though, are now… Continue reading Swimming in #Rathlin’s cultural landscape
I was really honoured to take part in Women Aloud NI's mass contribution to International Women's Day 2018. Following on from an energetic and inspiring launch to the annual project initiated by Jane Talbot in 2016, the 2018 event saw women writers from and living in the North of Ireland come together across the country… Continue reading @womenaloudNI loud and proud for #InternationalWomensDay2018
Hugh MacDonald interviews novelist and filmmaker Margot McCuaig I was featured in the Bella Caledonia this weekend, the monthly colour magazine produced in collaboration with the National newspaper. Hugh MacDonald is a powerful writer and he made an excellent job of exploring my filmmaking, my background, my novel writing and my love of history, football culture… Continue reading “The history woman” (not a bad mantle to aspire to)
You know this already, it is 2018. The deep red of the hawthorn fruit is resplendent against a silver sky, its bark black with penetrating rain. Patches of pale yellow swathe the still green grass, disfiguring the enduring landscape, but look again and you can imagine sheep flocking home, their woolly edges like fallen clouds… Continue reading 2018, a year of satisfaction, subterfuge or sabotage.
A mostly storm-bound week spent working, writing and sea-watching at my home on Rathlin Island concluded yesterday, and with it came tears as I packed up my computer and made for the city. Standing on the pier, my heart wonderfully weighted with contentment, I prepared to mourn the emptiness I would soon feel as its goodness thinned. Like… Continue reading An #Irish act of union – a #Rathlin island welcome.
I'm returning to the city tomorrow, back to my home town of Glasgow. I've been at Maoil na nDreas, my home on Rathlin Island, for three weeks. I've been working (a lot) but I've also been holidaying, spending quality time with family, writing, laughing, looking. Just looking. We don't look enough. When we do, we… Continue reading Saying goodbye is easier when the island is keeping watch.
Rathlin Island, the only habited island in Northern Ireland, has been a hot topic recently after a half-joking (and therefore half-serious) post-Brexit campaign to join an independent Scotland was picked up by the Scottish media. The campaign was spotted by political correspondent Gerry Braiden and he subsequently wrote an extensive article in the Herald. This was followed by a… Continue reading Post #Brexit Rathlin Island isn’t just about Robert the Bruce, spiders and snakes.