For the latest podcast Ali met up with poet and writer Donald S. Murray in Waterstone’s on Sauchiehall Street before the Glasgow launch of As The Women Lay Dreaming (Saraband Books), his novel which examines the Iolaire disaster of 1919 and the impact it has had on a community through the generations.
The two discuss the book (right) in detail and why this story of one of the worst peacetime maritime disasters remains largely unknown outside of the Highlands & Islands. They also examine the way Murray uses it as the starting point to say much about Scotland as a whole, covering themes which include language, religion, class, art, guilt, and family.
Donald also talks of the importance of the memory of the senses when it comes to recalling the past on the page, the crucial role of an editor, and others, in helping to see your own work more clearly, his struggles with structure, and the current healthy state of writing in and from the Highlands & Islands.
It’s a fascinating conversation about one of Scotland’s defining moments in history and much, much more. With the centenary of the sinking of the Iolaire imminent this is a podcast you won’t want to miss. There is some ‘cafe ambience’ to begin with, but that soon dies down and we hope it won’t affect your enjoyment of this informative and delightful discussion. And see if you can spot Ali’s deliberate mistake right at the beginning!
If you are new round these parts there is quite a substantial back catalogue of podcasts for you to discover. If you aren’t yet a subscriber you can do so, (or simply listen) at iTunes, on Podbean, or by RSS (but you’ll need to have an RSS reader to do so). You can also download the podcast by clicking on the relevant link to the right of this post, or, if you want it right here, right now, you can listen on SoundCloud…
..or on YouTube:
The podcasts come thick and fast over the festive period, so keep ’em peeled and don’t miss out…