Showcasing vibrant viewpoints
Harper Lee famously wrote that 'You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view - until you climb into his skin and walk around in it.' Presenting diverse realms of experience spanning politics, prejudice, pregnancy, poverty and more, this Issue showcases an array of strong and vibrant voices.
Expecting: The Inner Life of Pregnancy By Chitra Ramaswamy Published by Saraband Books
An unremarkable Sunday morning in November. A noirish time of year when nature’s reel turns monochrome and the world becomes as smudged and grainy as old newsprint. Sombre November, as TS Eliot called it. The last gasps of another year. On the morning dog walk the leaves were pockmarked from an excess of autumn and had lost their florid complexion. They were beginning to blacken now and stick to my shoes as though slick with a thin layer of oil. It was the eleventh month of the year, though Novem means nine for it was the ninth month in the Roman calendar. Nine months. A clue dropped by a season, like so many leaves.
And so with all this promise of death I found myself taking a test proposing life. A frightening test, though perhaps there is no other kind. A test taken by oneself in the privacy of one’s own bathroom towards the end of another year. A test whose result is revealed not by a mark on a page but by a stream of one’s own bog-standard urine. A test for which there are only two results. Either life is there, burrowing in a place as close to you as your own heartbeat...
David Robinson Reviews: Dalila by Jason Donald
'Reading Dalila did what fiction is supposed to do: it turned a key in my mind'
Ten years ago, when The Scotsman ran Britain’s biggest short story competition, each year I used to pick what its theme should be. For the first one, I wanted to select a subject that was hardly ever covered in fiction, one that would guarantee an influx of freshly written and entirely origi...
‘If I could no longer trust my own abilities how could I expect anyone else to want to climb with me?’
‘Every child deserves to see themselves, the people they are, reflected in a story’
‘Being at a distance as an author also gives you perspective’
‘My family on my father’s side were affected by the Partition. They had to make a new life in Delhi’
Travel to urban Russia in the first ever Gaelic travelogue
‘I was an only child growing up in Uliastai, in the western reaches of Outer Mongolia’
‘2017 is the year to push back against post-truths and champion real experience’
‘As I journey back and forth / From your spiritual hearth / To the bracing north’