Creative Dundee

The Pick: Dundee Literary Festival 2016

The annual Dundee Literary Festival, produced by the University of Dundee’s Literary Dundee initiative, returns this October for the 10th year! Peggy Hughes, festival programmer, provides the low-down in this special guest feature and picks out some choice events which are not to be missed.

Roll up, roll up – the Dundee Literary Festival hits town on Wednesday 19th October, and this year invites you to celebrate our 10th birthday with 50+ events over 5 days. We’ve picked a festival theme of time machines, all the better to doff our caps at literary legends including Roald Dahl, Shakespeare and Shirley Jackson, and future gaze with some incredible rising stars. We’ve also packed in our traditional array of events for comics fans, design lovers and plenty for children and families. Step into our time machine this autumn and lose yourself in some fantastic books…

We’ve picked out 5 choice events for your diaries:

Imaginary Cities with Darran Anderson


Saturday 22nd October, 2pm – £3 / £2
Part of Scotland’s Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design

A study of the human imagination and the way that it interacts with the world, Imaginary Cities roams through space, time and possibility. Darran Anderson’s ambitious tour of the city in myth, fiction and history veers down some unexpected paths – through opium dreams, sea voyages, the hallucinations of prisoners, nocturnal decadence, impossible Soviet skyscrapers, subterranean civilisations and much else – and invites you to tag along. Click here for more info.

New Kids on the Block: Neil Slorance & Maria Stoian


Left: Neil Slorance. Right: Maria Stoian by Andrew Perry

Saturday 22nd October, 12noon – £3 / £2

Join two of Scotland’s most exciting young graphic novelists as they discuss the power of graphic storytelling to tackle any topic, light or dark. Maria Stoian’s award-winning Take It as a Compliment is a beautiful, powerful exploration of real life experiences of sexual abuse, violence and harassment. Neil Slorance’s Modern Slorance: Torts and Tinder takes a gleeful look at life. Click here for more info.

Instrumentals: Roddy Woomble with Andrew Wasylyk

Roddy Woomble

Roddy Woomble

Friday 21st October, 9pm – £5 / £3

Instrumentals by Idlewild’s Roddy Woomble is a stunning narrative of a past and present. Lyrics, rare photographs and documents of notebooks, paintings and artefacts result in an almanac of ideas from one of Scotland’s finest modern songwriters. Dundee’s own multi-talented Andrew Wasylyk joins him in this performance. Click here for more info.

Big Braw Birthday Tea Dance

 Broons Tea Dance. Copyright D C Thomson

Broons Tea Dance. Copyright D C Thomson

Saturday 22nd October, 3pm – £3 / £2 (£1 from each ticket goes to The ARCHIE Foundation)
Part of Luminate: Scotland’s creative ageing festival

We’re ten and Oor Wullie and The Broons (even the Bairn!) are 80 years young. To mark this very special occasion, we’ve teamed up with our friends at D C Thomson to throw a great big tea dance and you’re invited. With swinging tunes from the University of Dundee’s very own Big Band, imagine Strictly Come Dancing, with added tea and cake. Click here for more info.

Sunlight & Shadows: Jenni Fagan, Hwang Jungeun & Deborah Smith

Left: Hwang Jungeun. Right: Jenni Fagan

Left: Hwang Jungeun. Right: Jenni Fagan

Wednesday 19th October, 6pm – £3 / £2

Jenni Fagan and Hwang Jungeun are joined by Deborah Smith, Man Booker International Prize-winning translator of Han Kang for a conversation about creating and sharing vivid, award-winning words. Expect oblique fantasy, hard-edge social critique, and offbeat romance. Click here for more info.

Future Scotlands: Tim Armstrong and Matthew Fitt


Image: Matthew Fitt

Friday 21st October, 11am – £3 / £2

Come and hear the Scots and Gaelic languages go places they’ve never ventured before, in this very special Dundee Literary Festival first. Tim Armstrong’s space-opera Air Cuan Dubh Drilseach (On a Glittering Black Sea) takes Gaelic into an advanced autocratic and hyper-capitalist future, shifting between whimsy and menace, while in cyberpunk thriller But n Ben A-Go-Go Matthew Fitt grabs the Scots language and energises it with a narrative that crackles and fizzes with life. Click here for more info.

But there’s much else besides! Burrow in and browse on:

Browse our programme by clicking here.
Book your tickets by clicking here.

Talk to us on Twitter: @literarydundee / #dundeelitfest

We can’t wait to see you in October!


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