I was born in England, lived for many years in Éire, and am now based in Carnoustie, Angus. In 2013, I was awarded a Carnegie-Cameron Scholarship to study for an Mlitt in Writing Practice and Study at the University of Dundee. I graduated with distinction in 2014, and was that year’s joint recipient of the Gavin Wallace Memorial Prize.

I am represented by Jenny Brown, of Jenny Brown Associates, and my debut novel Beneath the Skin will be published by Polygon in September this year. It is a psychological thriller, dealing with themes of trauma and identity.

My work, both fiction and poetry, has appeared in various publications, such as New Writing Dundee,  Dundee Writes and ‘Furies’, an anthology of women’s poetry published by For Book’s Sake. I also write fiction for women’s magazines.

I’m extremely grateful to Creative Scotland for this award, and the very fact that my work is being taken seriously at this level has given me, a debut writer, an enormous confidence boost.  The funding will buy me time to focus on my second novel The Bone Harp, and allow me to  immerse myself creatively in the stunningly beautiful and inspirational landscape of Barry Mill. I’m also indebted to the National Trust for Scotland for allowing me unlimited access to this property and to Ciarán Quigley, miller, for supporting my work.

About Barry Mill

If you Google Barry Mill, you’ll come across the following description:

Barry Mill is a working Category A listed watermill in Barry, Angus in eastern Scotland. It is owned and operated by the National Trust for Scotland as an educational tourist attraction.

Speak to visitors and you begin to see a bigger picture. Faces light up. Words recur: stunning; serene; tranquil; a haven. There’s something special about this place.

That last sentence is why I’m here.



Images: Michelle Spink