We are delighted to announce that Ian Rankin will host the Writing Awards at the Scottish Mental Health Arts Festival 2019, held in partnership with Bipolar Scotland.

Speaking about his involvement, the Scottish author, best known for his Rebus novels, said:

“I have always found there to be an element of therapy in getting something written. Writing helps me communicate with the world, make sense of the world, and deal with problems and anxieties. That's why I'm happy to endorse the Scottish Mental Health Arts Festival's annual writing competition.”

Always one of the most memorable nights of the festival, the Writing Awards ceremony offers an opportunity for both new and experienced writers to be recognised for their creative pieces exploring mental health. On the night, all the winning entrants are invited to read from their work, before the overall winners are awarded their prizes. There is also live music and a drinks reception. 

There is still time to enter the competition and this year we are looking for entries on the theme of Connected. The theme can be interpreted in any way you choose, and submissions are welcome in each of the following categories: 

  • Poems
  • Short stories
  • Newspaper articles
  • Diary or blog entries
  • Letters

If you would like to enter the competition, the closing date is 5pm on Friday 15th March 2019. For full guidelines and to submit your work, please download our application form here.

The Writing Awards ceremony will take place at St George’s Tron Church in Glasgow from 6.30-8.30pm on Wed 22 May 2019. Full details and booking information will be available when the SMHAF programme is launched.