Exclusive Preview - 100 Days of Hope and Fear by David Torrance

Reading this diary back during the editing process it was clear that, like [Nate] Silver [the US polling guru whose view was that the Yes campaign had virtually no chance of victory], I got a lot of things wrong (including the likely margin of victory) but also many things broadly correct. At least I can plead, as journalists often do, that I was probably right at the time.     DAVID TORRANCE

100 Days of Hope and Fear details an exciting campaign period of roughly 100 days that led up to the Scottish Referendum on 18 September 2014. David was in the middle of it all, as a political journalist he actively engaged with both sides, not taking a side but instead merely showing how it unfolded, or better said, slowly escalated. The book contains anonymous sources from inside both the yes and the no camp, and especially post-referendum these conversations recorded by Torrance provide a valuable (often humorous, not always popular) image of Scottish and Westminster politics which invites the reader to reflect if not respond to this historic event.

The launch for David’s book 100 Days of Hope and Fear: How Scotland’s Referendum was Lost and Wontook place on Wednesday 19 November 2014 at Waterstones on George Street, Edinburgh. David expertly retorted to some friendly banter (he was wearing one of his Twitter-famous vests), gave a reading from the book for which he choose three passages involving Alex Salmond, and after he engaged in an stimulating debate that ended on a light note with a jest about his perfectly crafted hair.

Thursday, 21 March 2013

Got up at 5.32am and rode my Brompton bicycle to Bikram Yoga. Filed 1000 words for the Scottish Review, 600 for the Herald, and 250 on Sylvester McCoy and the Barnett Formula for the Doctor Who fanzine.

I’ve been asked to go on Scotland Tonight to talk about some referendum question that’s been announced. I agreed as long as the make-up girl is under strict instructions not to touch The Hair. Also, I stressed that I would only appear as an impartial analyst because I don’t have a stance on Alex Salmond’s deranged proposal to break up our United Kingdom and turn the Scottish economy into an agrarian socialist dystopia.

This is not an actual passage from the book. It is written by Stephen Daisley from STV, who included several of such mock dairy entries in his review of the book. “His [David Torrance’s] diary is deliciously gossipy, entertainingly indiscreet, and a must-read for political geeks as well as those who want to see what goes on behind the scenes of Scotland’s politics and media,” says Daisley.


100 Days of Hope and Fear: How Scotland’s Referendum was Lost and Won is now available at Luath Press and in bookshops. Read the first 20 pages here.