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Press release: Ignite Fellowship seeks to elevate writing careers

Award offers support for writers taking the next step

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Scottish Book Trust, the national charity transforming lives through reading and writing, has today announced that applications are open for its Ignite Fellowship. Now in its fourth year, the Ignite Fellowship recognises the achievements of professional writers and will offer tailored, practical and financial support to help writers find time and space to fire up their careers.

There are three awards available and Scottish Book Trust is working in partnership with the Gaelic Books Council, who will fund one of these specifically for a writer working in Gaelic. Applications from writers working in Scots are also strongly encouraged.

Last year’s fellows included: poet and performer Courtney Stoddart; artist and filmmaker Raman Mundair; and Gaelic poet and translator Niall O’Gallagher.

During her Ignite Fellowship, Courtney Stoddart has worked on her first poetry pamphlet featuring themes of race, identity and the ramifications of colonialism and imperialism. She is being mentored by writer Rommi Smith.

Raman Mundair has used her time during the Fellowship to bring her work into focus with her mentor. Niall O’Gallagher worked on his forthcoming fourth book, a verse-novella called Litreachan Plàighe (Plague Letters), told through a series of letters between characters who find themselves separated from one another.

The Ignite Fellowship provides a flexible programme to suit the individual needs of the selected awardees. Fellows will receive a £2000 bursary and tailored creative support to suit their individual projects. The fellowship will run for one year, from January 2022 to January 2023.

Marc Lambert, CEO of Scottish Book Trust, said:

'The Ignite Fellowship now moves into its fourth year and looks to elevate the careers of writers, poets, playwrights and more who are looking to take the next step. The Ignite Fellowship programme is flexible to meet the needs of the awardee, which we know is more important now than ever. We encourage those writing in English, Scots and Gaelic to submit.'

Catriona Lexy Campbell, 2019 Ignite Fellow, said:

'The Ignite Fellowship has been an incredible opportunity, providing me with the time and space to develop this project with exceptional mentorship from Aisling Walsh. I'm so excited to see where the next stage of this project takes me and I'm so grateful to Scottish Book Trust for their support throughout this time.'

Writers based in Scotland are encouraged to apply for the Ignite Fellowship. Applicants must meet the criteria for Scottish Book Trust’s Live Literature Database, though do not need to be on the database to apply. Applications are welcome from writers, comic makers, poets, illustrators, storytellers, playwrights and spoken word artists.

The Ignite Fellowship will support writers who are embarking on a particular project including novels, poetry, screenplays and radio scripts. To apply, writers must have a project that still needs work. This project can be in the very early stages of development, such as an idea, outline or pitch, or already a work in progress.

Alison Lang, Director of the Gaelic Books Council, said:

'The Ignite Fellowship has so far offered Gaelic writers the opportunity to work on folklore, poetry and screen adaptations. We are delighted to be continuing our partnership with Scottish Book Trust to support another writer in creating new work and developing their career, and we will welcome applications across all forms and genres of literature.'

Gaelic entries will be assessed by the Gaelic Books Council.

Awardees will receive:

To apply for the Ignite Fellowship, please visit our webiste.

The deadline for applications is Wednesday 29 September, 12pm.

If you have any specific questions about your application or eligibility please send them to applications@scottishbooktrust.com(this will open in a new window)

Notes to Editors

For all media enquiries, please contact PR & Marketing Manager Keara Donnachie: Keara.Donnachie@scottishbooktrust.com(this will open in a new window) or 07956773749.

About Scottish Book Trust

Scottish Book Trust is a national charity that believes everyone living in Scotland should have equal access to books. Our work provides opportunities to improve life chances through books and the fundamental skills of reading and writing. Access to books and a love of books bring many important benefits from family bonding and advancing children’s learning, to unlocking creativity, helping employability and improving mental health & well-being. Scottish Book Trust aims to support all communities across Scotland, with particular focus on those who are vulnerable and under-represented.

Our programmes and outreach work include:

In addition to the funding we receive from the Scottish Government and Creative Scotland, we need the constant support of trusts and foundations, corporate sponsors and individual donors.

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Gaelic Books Council

The Gaelic Books Council(this will open in a new window) is the lead organisation with responsibility for supporting Scottish Gaelic authors and publishers, and for raising the profile and reach of Scottish Gaelic books in Scotland and internationally.

Creative Scotland

Creative Scotland is the public body that supports the arts, screen and creative industries across all parts of Scotland on behalf of everyone who lives, works or visits here. We enable people and organisations to work in and experience the arts, screen and creative industries in Scotland by helping others to develop great ideas and bring them to life. We distribute funding provided by the Scottish Government and the National Lottery.

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