Tyne & Esk Writers is an umbrella organisation representing the seven writing groups in Midlothian and East Lothian. Thanks to the Library Services of both counties, we’ve been able in the past to have the services of a Writer-in-Residence, part-funded by the Scottish Arts Council. Since the last Writer (the excellent and energetic Drew Campbell) finished his contract, however, the SAC has turned down our applications for funds two years in succession.
This has obliged us to look elsewhere for funding, and our latest funding application – to a different funder – was posted off on Friday. I’m very hopeful of success.
It has made me think again about the way SAC supports, or fails to support, good local literary initiatives. Are they still the best body to be distributing Scottish Executive funding to support writing development? Notice I haven’t said ‘creative writing’ – that’s another phrase that annoys me. All writing is creative, whether it’s factual or a work of imagination. I’ll return to this in another forum.