Richie's Blog

AUG 2016

This Saturday (3rd September) I will be reading my poetry at 2.30pm in the William Lamb Memorial Studio in Montrose. Joining me will be two of the finest poets in Aberdeenshire: Haworth Hodgkinson and Catriona Yule, both members of the Blue Salt Collective.
SUNDAY, 28TH AUGUST 2016

JUL 2016

I am delighted that my poem 'Soul Music' has been published in issue three of the fine online poetry journal Picaroon Poetry.
SUNDAY, 24TH JULY 2016
One hundred and fifty years after Charles Dickens visited Aberdeen, the international Dickens Fellowship came to the Granite City for their annual conference.
SUNDAY, 24TH JULY 2016

APR 2016

Last Sunday I joined Gerard Rochford, Sheena Blackhall, Andy Bissett, Angie Joss and Catriona Yule for the first of a new series of poetry sessions at Balmedie's Beach Side Cafe in aid of Shopmobility.
WEDNESDAY, 27TH APRIL 2016
Some of my stories are odd. They may not start out meaning to be odd, but they inevitably end up laa-laa and more straitjacket than book jacket. Every now and again I chance upon a periodical shouting out for oddities.
MONDAY, 18TH APRIL 2016

FEB 2016

Writing something inspired by the works, characters or stories Charles Dickens is harder than it looks, eh? You only have to consider BBC1's all-star 'Dickensian'.
THURSDAY, 11TH FEBRUARY 2016
Funny in Five Hundred have been good enough to publish my story 'The Replica' in / on their hallowed pages this month.
THURSDAY, 4TH FEBRUARY 2016

DEC 2015

The fabulous Better Read Books shop in Ellon ran a competition open to Aberdeenshire school pupils throughout November and, last Friday, I gathered with fellow poets Haworth Hodgkinson, Catriona Yule and Fred and Francis Crawford to discuss the entries over cuppas and sandwiches on the shop floor.
WEDNESDAY, 9TH DECEMBER 2015

NOV 2015

Yesterday, in my capacity as a local Reading Champion, I was invited to an event at the Beach Ballroom for Aberdeen schoolchildren to hear from the three writers nominated in the 8-11 category for the Scottish Children's Book Awards. Nine hundred children packed into the venue to hear writers Elizabeth Laird, Ross MacKenzie and Gillian Philip whet collective appetites as they described why Aberdeen's boys and girls should vote for them.
WEDNESDAY, 18TH NOVEMBER 2015

OCT 2015

As I have done on most National Poetry Days in recent years, I issued an open challenge on Twitter to my followers for poem requests. Happily, I received three responses which allowed me to get my poetry hat back on for the first time in a while. I should note that these were mainly concocted off the top of my head so I make no guarantees whatsoever about the quality of them!
THURSDAY, 8TH OCTOBER 2015

SEP 2015

I have a poem featured in the new pamphlet White Wings of Delight, a new collection of seagull-inspired poems put together by Elizabeth Reinach and Keith Murray which was launched last week with all proceeds going to the RSPB charity.
MONDAY, 28TH SEPTEMBER 2015

JUN 2015

Read my submission to the Scottish Book Trust's "Journeys" project recounting my adventures on a family holiday to Paris in the summer of 1985. It's got it all from car sickness to the Pan-European language barrier.
TUESDAY, 30TH JUNE 2015

APR 2015

Aberdeen Performing Arts held the first of three 'scratch nights' at the Lemon Tree last night. These nights allow new North East writers to hear their work performed, script-in-hand, by some of the city's actors with some basic but effective direction.
MONDAY, 13TH APRIL 2015

MAR 2015

No matter how he continues to impress as a poet, Stonehaven's Neil Young just cannot shake the association with his famous alter ego.
THURSDAY, 26TH MARCH 2015
Dear readers, you may not be aware of it, but I have recently switched / moved / upgraded, call it what you like, from being an Aberdeen writer to an Aberdeenshire writer.
MONDAY, 2ND MARCH 2015

OCT 2014

I spent this year's National Poetry Day whizzing around Moray schools delivering three packed one-hour workshops to secondary pupils - S2 at Elgin High, S6 at Elgin Academy and S4 at Lossiemouth High.
THURSDAY, 2ND OCTOBER 2014

APR 2014

Bed time stories for a great set of rough-sleeping volunteers.
FRIDAY, 25TH APRIL 2014
I was back on the airwaves on SHMU FM's Literature Show with Haworth Hodgkinson, Ian Anderson and Mark Pithie.
MONDAY, 14TH APRIL 2014
Last Thursday I was back in Cellar 35, but this time in support for the very talented young Glasgow poet Kevin P Gilday.
FRIDAY, 11TH APRIL 2014

MAR 2014

The bastard son of Demented Eloquence, Per-Verse! is the first show I've presented solo and I think it went rather well.
MONDAY, 31ST MARCH 2014
This week I attended StAnza (St Andrews' world-famous poetry festival) and performed in their slam.
MONDAY, 10TH MARCH 2014

FEB 2014

On 1st February, in our usual home at Cellar 35 in Aberdeen, I hosted this year's North East Spoken Word Slam, always a key event in the local literary calendar. Despite treacherous weather, eight contestants and a decent-sized audience filed in to the underground venue and prepared for three rounds of literary sparring among wildly-differing styles.
MONDAY, 3RD FEBRUARY 2014

DEC 2013

Viewers of my Twitter profile may have noticed I describe myself there as a 'reward-winning writer', but now I can officially change that to 'award-winning' as I have just heard that I have won the Scottish Book Trust's monthly 50 word fiction competition for November.
TUESDAY, 3RD DECEMBER 2013

NOV 2013

This gig had been a long time coming since I was first asked back in September. It came and went last Thursday and, boy, did I have fun doing it.
FRIDAY, 29TH NOVEMBER 2013
On Saturday, we said goodbye to Demented Eloquence North in the best way we could - with a packed cellar, three great turns, a rip-roaring open mic and the return of my co-host Kit Fryatt.
MONDAY, 25TH NOVEMBER 2013

OCT 2013

Today was National Poetry Day in the UK and, for the fourth year running, I tweeted that I'd write anyone a short poem on a given subject or a given theme. This year I had three requests, so here are three brand new poems.
THURSDAY, 3RD OCTOBER 2013

OCT 2012

It's National Poetry Day once again and, as usual, I have offered to write as many poems suggested by the good folks on Twitter today as I can. Both in 2011 and 2010 I received a single request but, thus far, I have a whopping six...so I expect I shall be busy later on.
THURSDAY, 4TH OCTOBER 2012

JUL 2012

The fall of the iron curtain did not necessarily signal the end of the show for the spy fiction genre. New novellist Chris Morgan Jones has swapped the duplicity of the intelligentsia for the dark, iniquitous world of contemporary business intelligence and the all-powerful Russian oligarchs who run the show in his new book 'An Agent of Deceit'.
WEDNESDAY, 18th JULY 2012

FEB 2012

Catherine Webb releases 'The Minority Council' under her pen name Kate Griffin on the 1st March, her twelfth release in all. What makes this all the more remarkable is that, at the age of 25, she has now been a published author for over a decade and balances her working life between writing fiction and theatrical lighting design.
THURSDAY, 2ND FEBRUARY 2012

SEP 2011

It is now well-established fact that around 90% of the public think Twitter is a waste of time: no more than several million wastrels logging their dietary habits or complaining about the weather. The other 10% may indeed be tweeting with gusto about pesto or raining down on their keyboards about, er, the rain but a select few do so much more with each precious set of 140 characters.
THURSDAY, 8TH SEPTEMBER 2011

JAN 2011

Some bands never learn. Having braved the British winter in 2009, Austin's Ringo Deathstarr arrived this afternoon in frozen Aberdeen and they haven't removed their hats and scarves since. Frontman Elliott Frazier is wearing a woollen hat that only just covers a voluminous mop of curly hair and there is an audible shiver in his voice.
THURSDAY, 6TH JANUARY 2011

OCT 2010

Spike Milligan once dedicated a book of his children's poems to 'the unsung genius of Ivor Cutler, who but for the public's total lack of appreciation would be a very rich man'. It may have served as his epitaph - for every confirmed Cutlerite there are a good hundred people who have never heard of him.
FRIDAY, 22ND OCTOBER 2010

MAY 2008

Having signed to Warp Records on the strength of their debut self-titled EP, Born Ruffians released their debut LP 'Red Yellow and Blue' this week and shortly before taking to an Aberdeen stage we got the chance to catch up with bassist Mitch Derosier. Like his bandmates, Mitch is as far from a born ruffian as you get, he's a gentle Canadian gent but he's on the lookout for some sandpaper.
FRIDAY, 30TH MAY 2008