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Barry Graham

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Contact: barrygrahamthescrivener@streetsandtunnels.addy.io
Local authority: Glasgow City
Languages: English, Scots
Barry Graham's headshot

I am a fiction-writer, poet, essayist and Zen Buddhist monk, the author of more than a dozen books, most of which have been translated into French. My novel The Book of Man was chosen as a best book of the year by the American Library Association. In 2021, I was awarded the Prix Marianne for the French translation of my 1991 novel The Champion's New Clothes


I lead writing workshops in schools and prisons, and give performances in which I recite sections of my novels from memory. I also teach the practice of Kado (The Way of Poetry), with writing as a method of Zen meditation. I have a PVG.


I lived for 22 years in the USA, where I witnessed two executions, at the invitation of the men who were to be killed, an experience described in my book Why I Watch People Die. I returned home to Scotland in response to the election of Donald Trump, and now live in Maryhill, Glasgow, where I was born and grew up.


Barry Graham is a pen name.


(Photo credit: daishin stephenson)

Local authorities can visit

Aberdeen City; Aberdeenshire; Angus; Argyll and Bute; Clackmannanshire; Dumfries and Galloway; Dundee; East Ayrshire; East Dunbartonshire; East Lothian; East Renfrewshire; Edinburgh City; Falkirk; Fife; Glasgow City; Highland; Inverclyde; Midlothian; Moray; Na h-Eileanan Siar (Western Isles); North Ayrshire; North Lanarkshire; Orkney Islands; Perth and Kinross; Renfrewshire; Scottish Borders; Shetland; South Ayrshire; South Lanarkshire; Stirling; West Dunbartonshire; West Lothian

Events can deliver

Mentoring; Panel event; Performance; Reading; Residency; Talk; Workshop

Audience can work with

Adult learners; Care-experienced people; People experiencing mental health problems; Prisoners & young offenders; Vulnerable young people (under 18)

Topics of work

Activism & protest; Adolescence; Biography & memoir; Care experience; Childhood; Class & society; Contemporary fiction; Crime fiction; Death, grief & bereavement; Drug addiction, alcoholism & substance abuse; Family; Friendship; Health including mental health & wellbeing; Horror; LGBTQIA+ characters; Loneliness & isolation; Love & romance; Mystery & thriller; Politics; Poverty; Religion & beliefs; Self-publishing & independent publishing; Urban communities; Violence & abuse

Age groups published for


Age groups can work with

12-14; 15-18; 18+

Audience size

0-10; 11-30; 31-100; 100-500; 500+