The Dumfries Writers’ Group began as a workshop in the late 1940s. Over the intervening years there have been many changes in the group’s structure.
The group was run under the auspices of the Department of Adult and Continuing Education of the University of Glasgow (DACE). When the DACE programme ended, the group decided to continue under its own steam, self-funding through membership fees. It also received Scottish Book Trust Live Literature funding towards the cost of guest writers/tutor.
For a time the group was tutor-led by Liz Niven, with members learning how to critique and edit their work. Now, the group is comfortable and assured in peer-reviewing work submitted. Throughout winter and spring, members meet fortnightly and there is a varied programme with a mix of workshops designed to generate new work and guest writers: Gwen Kirkwood, Catriona McPherson, Tom Pow, Cathy Cassidy and John Hudson have been valued visitors. The group is grateful to Glasgow University for allowing it to meet in a room on Crichton Campus.
In the last few years the group has produced several anthologies. The first, Beyond The Margins, followed a workshop with Hugh Bryden on making artists’ books. It sold out after a launch at Wigtown Book Festival and led to the following year’s anthology, Out of the Box followed by Continuity. The Fankle is its first attempt at a continuing publication.
However the group has evolved, its aims of providing a forum to create new writing, and to offer support to writers working in all genres remain constant.
For further information contact Mary Smith on firstname.lastname@example.org or Tel: 01556 504476.