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Celebrating 100 Years of Muriel Spark

  • Blairgowrie Community Campus Blairgowrie and Rattray Blairgowrie PH10 6FH (map)

11.00 – 12.00  Alan Taylor – Appointment in Arezzo – A friendship with Muriel Spark

12.15 – 13.00 Gail Wylie in conversation with Alan Taylor and Rosemary Goring

Lunch and Book Signing

14.00 – 15.00 Stewart Conn and Gerda Stevenson

BOOKMARK is delighted to offer special events to celebrate the centenary of Muriel Spark, one of Scotland's best-loved and most original writers. Alan Taylor, well-known journalist and critic, became her good friend. His memoir Appointment in Arezzo is an exceptional account of this friendship.

He will be joined by Rosemary Goring, Literary Editor of The Herald and Gail Wylie, Past Chair of the Muriel Spark Society to discuss the joys – and difficulties – of abridging Spark's work for radio.

Special guest, Olga Wojtas, will be discussing her debut novel  'Miss Blaine's Prefect and the Golden Samovar'. A comic crime novel, it features 50-something former Blainer Shona McMonagle, selected by Marcia Blaine herself to travel back in time for a one-week mission in 19th century Russia. But despite having had the finest education in the world, has Shona got the wrong end of the stick about what she is supposed to do?

After lunch: Mistress of Unease: The Poetry of Muriel Spark - Muriel Spark insisted, 'Although most of my life has been devoted to fiction, I have always thought of myself as a poet' and that 'for creative writing of any sort an early apprenticeship as a poet is a wonderful stimulant and start'. With this as his starting point Stewart Conn pinpoints the wry wit, icy eye, love of the Ballads and array of spectral figures he believes mark her out as a Mistress of Unease - and to which Gerda Stevenson gives vibrant voice.

BOOKMARK would like to thank the Muriel Spark Society ( Lyon & Turnbull, Edinburgh ( for their sponsorship of this event.

Tickets for this event are £15 and are available from the Bookmark tickets page.

Quines: Poems in tribute to women of Scotland by Gerda Stevenson