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Donald S Murray

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Contact: [email protected]
Local authority: Shetland
Languages: English, Gaelic
Donald S Murray's headshot

Described as having "one of the most original and innovative voices in contemporary Scottish Literature", Donald S Murray (Domhnall S  Moireach) was raised in Ness, Isle of Lewis. A weaver's son, he went to the Nicolson Institute in Stornoway and was an English teacher for thirty years.

A Gaelic speaker, he is sometimes heard on BBC Radio Nan Gaidheal and seen on BBC Alba. Among other programmes, he appeared on BBC 4's Birds Britannia, where he morphed briefly into Sir David Attenborough.

He has been widely published. His verse and prose have been broadcast on BBC Scotland and have featured in national newspapers, being shortlisted for both Saltire and the Callum MacDonald Memorial Awards. His non-fiction book The Guga Hunters (Birlinn) garnered excellent reviews, including one from Will Self in the Telegraph. Two titles Herring Tales (Bloomsbury) and The Guga Stone (Luath) were chosen among the Guardian Nature Books of the Year. Writer and broadcaster Stephen Moss also chose The Dark Stuff (Bloomsbury) as among his best ten books of 2018. His novel As The Women Lay Dreaming (Saraband) is currently listed as being among the Best First Novels of 2018 by the Authors' Club and was also the subject of a televised documentary. (Photo credit: Sandie Maciver)

Local authorities will 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 will deliver

Bilingual event; Panel event; Reading; Residency; Talk; Workshop; Chairing events

Audience will work with

Adult learners; Intergenerational learning; Reluctant readers; Vulnerable young people (under 18); Young people with additional support needs (under 18) (ASN/SEN)

Topics of work

Biography & memoir; Childhood; Coasts, seas & oceans; Contemporary fiction; Environment & climate; Family; Historical fiction; History; Island communities; Nature; Rural communities; Travel writing; Wars & conflicts; World War 1

Age groups published for


Age groups will work with

6-8; 9-11; 12-14; 15-18; 18+

Audience size

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