Summer Issue Online Now!

Dear Readers,

It is with great pleasure that we present the long-awaited Issue 22 of From Glasgow to Saturn. This contains a selection of prose and poetry from the myriad talents of Catherine Baird, Patrick Holloway, R. A. Davis, Bethany Anderson, Izabela Ilowska, Siobhan Staples, Mizzy Hussain, Caroline Moir, Michelle Waering, Andrea Stout, G. W. Colkitto, Alan Bissett, Kathrine Sowerby, Katy McAulay, Mairi McCloud, Mark Fraser, Kirsty Neary, Anneliese Mackintosh, Katy Ewing, Matthew Baxter, Kirsty Logan, Gill Davies, Angela Blacklock-Brown, Elly Farrelly, George Craig, Thomas Walpole, Carol McKay, Evanglia Daskalaki and Vivien Jones.

You can read the poetry and prose online, or via our supershiny, free, downloadable pdf, which you can print off or upload to some kind of new-fangled e-reader gizmo or simply save to your desktop.

Cyril Connolly once said that there are two kinds of literary magazine: hotels and clubs. Hotels ‘fill up every week with a different clique.’ Clubs are occupied by a single clique whose purpose in life is to keep non-members out.[1]

Over our nine-month editorship of From Glasgow to Saturn, we have tried to be more of an hotel than a club. We have travelled in a different direction than James Byrne, editor of the ultra-clubbish The Wolf, who announced in a recent editorial that he will publish nothing but ‘demanding’ work which possesses ‘layers of multiplicity of meaning’; writing that ‘hovers among uncertainties.’[2]

In the hands of the present editors, From Glasgow to Saturn did not seek to promote (or discredit) any particular style of writing. We opened our doors equally to poetry that was free or accentual-syllabic, obscure or accessible. We had no preference for prose that was realistic instead of fantastic, gritty instead of uplifting. All we looked for was writing that worked.

So what kind of writing do we consider to work? Does a poem work if it makes the reader think deeply about the human condition? Does a story work if there’s a twist at the end the reader didn’t see coming? Ultimately, the judgment of what works is subjective; it is felt but cannot be explained; the editors’ judgment must be final, and like the decision of a jury, does not need to be justified.

In Issue 22, we offer poetry and prose pieces which, in our collective opinion, work well. Here you will find concrete verses, experimental formats, characters dark and delightful. We hope you enjoy the issue and find something that moves you. Please feel free to leave comments letting the writers and editors know what you make of the selection.

And with that, our task is complete. It is now time to hand over the editorship to a new and sparkling team: Paul Deaton, Megan Primrose and Siobhan Staples. We wish them well for the next incarnation of the University of Glasgow’s creative writing showcase, and look forward to their launch in the autumn.

With good wishes,

Alan Gillespie, Nick Boreham and Sheila Millar

___________________________

[1] Cyril Connolly, ‘Fifty Years of Little Magazines’, Art and Literature 1 (1964).

[2] James Byrne, ‘Editorial’, The Wolf, issue 19 (2008), pp 2-3.

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Afternoon Readings with the BBC

Why hullo there!

Happy New Year to all our readers, contributors, subscribers, and the rest. Thanks for all your support in 2010, and we look forward to 2011 with great excitement.

BBC Radio 4 has recently been showcasing new Scottish writing on their afternoon reading slot. You’ll have to be quick to hear them all, as they are only held in the archive for seven days each, but here are the links. Click the title of the story you want to hear to be taken to the website. Enjoy!

Fear in a Hat

A shy schoolgirl fears the worst when she attends a compulsory religious retreat with her catty classmates.

Read by Sally Reid

Written by Nicola White
Producer: Eilidh McCreadie

This story is available until January 11th.

Nicola White lives on a peninsula in Argyll, between a picturesque sea loch and an MOD arms depot. A former art curator and documentary producer, she turned her back on the city and steady wages a few years ago. Since then she has been invited to read her work at the Blue Room, Newcastle and the Irish Writers Centre, Dublin. In 2008 she received a Scottish Book Trust New Writers Award.


The Last Cup

Set on a windswept Western Isle, a kindly old fisherman and his stern minister find a poignant sliver of common ground over tea from a chipped china cup.

Read by Matthew Zajac.
Written by Merryn Glover.
Producer: Patricia Hitchcock

This story is available until January 12th.

Merryn Glover is a playwright and author of short stories and received a Scottish Arts Council bursary. She has written plays for BBC Radio Scotland.


Matryoshka

A spoilt princess craves possession of the one thing she can’t have in this new spin on a familiar tale.

Read by Nicola Jo Cully

Written by Kirsty Logan
Producer: Eilidh McCreadie

This story is available until January 13th.

Kirsty Logan graduated in 2009 from Glasgow University’s Creative Writing MLitt; over the next year she won a New Writers Award from the Scottish Book Trust, the Gillian Purvis Award, and third place in the Bridport Prize. She regularly performs her own work and recently read at the Edinburgh International Book Festival. Her short fiction has been published in around 80 anthologies and literary magazines. Kirsty is currently working on her first novel and a short story collection.