Mr Kevin MacNeil

Lecturer in Creative Writing

English Studies University of Stirling, Stirling, FK9 4LA

Mr Kevin MacNeil

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About me

About me

Multi-award-winning author (novelist, playwright, screenwriter, poet), editor, lecturer. Born and raised in the Outer Hebrides. Work translated and published internationally. Numerous radio and television appearances nationally and in other countries.

PUBLICATIONS First book, Love and Zen in the Outer Hebrides (Canongate), won the Tivoli Europa Giovani International Poetry Prize, and novels A Method Actor's Guide to Jekyll and Hyde (Polygon) and best-selling debut The Stornoway Way (Penguin) were both published to widespread critical praise. Third novel, The Brilliant & Forever (Polygon), received excellent reviews and was shortlisted for the Saltire Fiction Book of the Year Award. All three novels have been named a Book of the Year in many newspapers, such as the Guardian, The Times, etc.

Books I have edited include: Robert Louis Stevenson: An Anthology Selected by Jorge Luis Borges and Adolfo Bioy Casares, Edited by Kevin MacNeil – the first time this book the iconic Argentine writer Borges conceived in the 1960s has been published (Polygon, 2017). Struileag: Shore to Shore - Poems and Essays on the Gaelic Diaspora – poetry and essays (Polygon, 2015). These Islands, We Sing: An Anthology of Scottish Islands Poetry - poetry anthology, ed. Kevin MacNeil (Polygon, 2011). The Red Door: The Collected English Stories of Iain Crichton Smith 1949-76 (ed. and introduced by Kevin MacNeil, Birlinn, Edinburgh 2002). The Black Halo: The Collected English Stories of Iain Crichton Smith 1977-98 (ed. by Kevin MacNeil, Birlinn, Edinburgh 2002). Wish I Was Here (multicultural anthology incorporating poems and photographs, ed. Kevin MacNeil and Alec Finlay, Pocketbooks, Edinburgh 2000). See below for recent and forthcoming publications.

LITERARY HONOURS AND AWARDS

Herald Angels Award for Outriders project

J.B. Priestley Award

Writer in Residence, Shetland Isles

Writer in Residence, Ullapool Book Festival

Writing Residency at Palace Villa Concordia, Bamberg, Bavaria

Writer in Residence at International Festival of Middle Eastern Spirituality and Peace

Scottish Arts Council Writer’s Bursary (twice)

British Council Writer in Residence, Uppsala University, Sweden

Hawthornden Fellowship

Millennium Quality Award in Special Recognition of achievements as Iain Crichton Smith Writing Fellow

Overall Winner, Tivoli Europa Giovani International Poetry Prize for best collection of poetry published in Europe by a writer under 35

Invitation to meet the Queen as a young achiever

Inaugural Recipient, the Iain Crichton Smith Bilingual Writing Fellowship (Writer in Residence for the Scottish Highlands)

RECENT AND FORTHCOMING PROJECTS The Secret Realm (animated feature film for children based on my ideas and characters, in development with multinational team). 'Ordinary Case of RLS and RLS' (short story and film to celebrate Robert Louis Stevenson's 170th birthday, released RLS Day, November 2020). 'The Blue Folk of the Minch' - a piece of fiction commissioned by Radio 4, broadcast September 2020. Hai Cookery – a non-fiction book based around a form of cooking I invented (manuscript currently with publisher). 'On Cycling' - an essay on the links between cycling and wellbeing, published in book The Mental Cyclist, ed. Kyle MacRae, Autumn 2020. 'Misty Islands and Invisible Bridges' - keynote speech I gave at the University of Aix-Marseille will feature in a book of academic essays arising from that conference to be published by Edinburgh University Press soon. 'Hebridean Moon' - a piece of fiction on the coronavirus crisis, published by Pendemic. 'Molly the Greyhound Attends a Poetry Reading' - poem and video in The Island Review. Gaelic and English poems in recent editions of Northwords Now and Poetry Scotland, and haiku in various international literary journals. Short stories and poems in recent editions of annual New Writing Scotland book (Association for Scottish Literary Studies).

COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT

Judge, Highland Book Prize (four times); Judge, Wigtown Poetry Prize (twice); Judge, Scottish Book Trust New Writers Awards; Scottish Book Trust New Writers Mentor (three times). Have taught numerous residential courses at Moniack Mhor (Scotland's Writing Centre) - not only a wide variety of adult courses, but also schools courses and courses for care-experienced young adults.

Have taught residential writing courses for the Arvon Foundation.

Have taught creative writing workshops in prison.

APPEARANCES/PERFORMANCES Lectured and performed own work in many countries (including Japan, Hungary, Ireland, USA, Czech Republic, Colombia, Germany, Argentina, Sweden, Italy, etc).

Have read in many diverse venues, from the Scottish Parliament to a sea cave to the Royal Festival Hall to an amphitheatre with an audience of 10,000.

SPOKEN WORD/MUSIC 'Bring the Moon Home' with lauded London-based group HLY FCK, featured on their album 'Midnights'. Akutagawa (live album with Willie Campbell and Colin ‘The Boy Who Trapped the Sun’ Macleod; I co-wrote all the songs). Kevin MacNeil and Willie Campbell Are Visible From Space (full-length album of songs by Kevin MacNeil and Willie Campbell). Local Man Ruins Everything by William Campbell and Kevin MacNeil limited edition 7” single, etched on one side with poem and map of Lewis, released by London label Fantastic Plastic. Single of the Week in The Guardian, The List and on Steve Lamacq’s BBC 6 Music Show. Colombian Fireworks, opening track from debut album by There Will Be Fireworks, written in collaboration. Tha Na Laithean a’ Dol Seachad/The Days Flash Past (CD by Paul Mounsey, contributor on 3 tracks). The Jewel Box (CD of poetry produced by Scottish Poetry Library, contributor on 2 tracks).

Research

The intersection of Buddhism and literature, recent and contemporary literature of the Scottish Highlands and Islands, Buddhism (Theravada and Mahayana, but especially interested in Zen), Scottish Literature, poetry and prose of the Hebrides, contemporary novels, creative writing, playwriting, screenwriting, poetry, Buddhist literature, the connections between physical activity and creativity.

Outputs (51)

Outputs

Book Chapter

MacNeil K (2022) Misty Islands and Hidden Bridges. In: Pittin-Hedon M, Manfredi C & Hames S (eds.) Scottish Writing After Devolution: Edges of the New. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, pp. 163-175.

Book Chapter

MacNeil K (2022) An deidh Santoka Taneda. In: New Writing Scotland 40: Nobody Remembers the Birdman. New Writing Scotland, 40. Glasgow: Association for Scottish Literary Studies.

Other

MacNeil K (2022) Coll Beach Sutra. [Magazine], pp. 38-39.

Other

MacNeil K (2022) Gaelic poems. [print]. Aberdeen: Aberdeen University Press.

Book Chapter

MacNeil K (2022) Time is a Knife that Heals. In: A Collection of Short Stories on the Theme of Between Islands. Stornoway: An Lanntair.

Book Chapter

MacNeil K (2021) Ordinary Case of RLS and RLS. In: Robert Louis Stevenson Club (ed.) Fortunate Voyager: A Celebration of Robert Louis Stevenson. Edinburgh: Merchiston Publishing/Napier University/Robert Louis Stevenson Club, pp. 29-34.

Book Chapter

MacNeil K (2020) Humour. In: The Middle of a Sentence: Short Prose Anthology. Glasgow: The Common Breath, pp. 62-3.

Other

MacNeil K (2020) Japan Poems. [print and online]. Gaidhealtachd.

Book Chapter

MacNeil K (2020) faclan, eich-mhara. In: 100 Dain as Fhearr Leinn/100 Favourite Gaelic Poems. Edinburgh: Luath Press.

Other

MacNeil K (2020) Selection of poems. [print, online, and audio]. Gaidhealtachd.

Other

MacNeil K (2018) Gaelic poems. [print and online]. Gaidhealtachd.

Book Chapter

MacNeil K (2018) Makar. In: With Their Best Clothes On. New Writing Scotland, 36. Glasgow: Association for Scottish Literary Studies.

Other

MacNeil K (2018) Gaelic poems. [print and online]. Gaidhealtachd.

Book Review

MacNeil K (2017) 'Oyster' by Michael Pedersen, with illustrations by Scott Hutchison. Review of: Oyster by Michael Pedersen, with illustrations by Scott Hutchison, Edinburgh, Polygon Books 2017, 128 pp. ISBN: 9781846973970. The Bottle Imp, (22). https://www.thebottleimp.org.uk/2017/11/oyster-michael-pedersen-illustrations-scott-hutchison/

Authored Book

MacNeil K (2017) The Diary of Archie the Alpaca. Edinburgh: Polygon Books. https://www.amazon.co.uk/Diary-Archie-Alpaca-Kevin-MacNeil/dp/1846974062/ref=pd_sbs_14_1?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=A7DV26250W0FR1M7WHTR

Book Chapter

MacNeil K (2017) Kevin MacNeil. In: Outriders. Edinburgh: Polygon/Edinburgh International Book Festival, pp. 56-65.

Authored Book

MacNeil K (2016) The Brilliant & Forever [The Brilliant and Forever]. Edinburgh: Polygon Books. https://www.amazon.co.uk/Brilliant-Forever-Kevin-MacNeil/dp/1846973376/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1500472802&sr=1-1

Edited Book

MacNeil K (ed.) (2015) Struileag: Shore to Shore - Cladach gu Cladach. Edinburgh: Polygon Books. https://www.amazon.co.uk/Struileag-Shore-Cladach/dp/1846973171/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1500472683&sr=1-1&keywords=struileag

Other

MacNeil K (2015) 'Silence in the Mirror'. [Print]. Dublin: Poetry Ireland, pp. 114-118.

Book Chapter

MacNeil K (2014) Homer and the Ceilidh. In: New Writing Dundee 8. New Writing Dundee, 8. Dundee: University of Dundee, pp. 57-60.

Book Chapter

MacNeil K (2014) Aliens that Weren't and a Spaceship that Was. In: Songs of Other Places. New Writing Scotland, 32. Glasgow: Association for Scottish Literary Studies, pp. 111-118.

Other

MacNeil K (2014) Late. Gutter, (10), pp. 28-30.

Other

MacNeil K (2012) Buddha. Gutter, (06), pp. 66-69.

Other

MacNeil K (2011) Gaelic poems. Gutter, (05), pp. 163-4.

Book Chapter

MacNeil K (2011) Gaelic poems translated into German. In: Beredter Norden: Schottische Lyrik seit 1900. Berlin: Edition Rugerup.

Edited Book

MacNeil K (ed.) (2011) These Islands, We Sing: An Anthology of Scottish Islands Poetry. Edinburgh: Polygon Books. https://www.amazon.co.uk/These-Islands-We-Sing-Anthology/dp/1846971969/ref=la_B001K82SYW_1_8?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1500472140&sr=1-8

Book Chapter

MacNeil K (2010) Uair neo Uaireigin. In: Eadar Da Sgeul: Sgeulachdan Goirid aig Ire Ard-Sgoile. Stornoway: Storlann, pp. 104-115.

Authored Book

MacNeil K (2010) A Method Actor's Guide to Jekyll and Hyde. Edinburgh: Polygon Books. https://www.amazon.co.uk/Method-Actors-Guide-Jekyll-Hyde/dp/1846971691/ref=la_B001K82SYW_1_7?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1500472459&sr=1-7

Book Chapter

MacNeil K (2009) Aberdeen. In: Silver: An Aberdeen Anthology. Edinburgh: Polygon, p. 10.

Book Chapter

MacNeil K (2007) Edinburgh Man. In: Perverted by Language: Fiction inspired by The Fall. London: Serpent's Tail, pp. 179-188.

Book Chapter

MacNeil K (2007) Poems. In: Ten Seasons: explorations in Botanics. Edinburgh: Luath Press/Scottish Poetry Library.

Book Chapter

MacNeil K (2005) Poems. In: Freedom Spring: Ten Years On. Glasgow: Waverley Books, pp. 98-99.

Book Chapter

MacNeil K (2005) 'Corneal Graft'. In: The Hand that Sees: Poems for the Quincentenary of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh. Edinburgh: Scottish Poetry Library/The Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh, pp. 58-9.

Authored Book

MacNeil K (2005) The Stornoway Way. London: Penguin Books. https://www.amazon.co.uk/Stornoway-Way-Kevin-MacNeil/dp/0141021608

Book Chapter

MacNeil K (2004) faclan, eich-mhara. In: Belso Terek: Huszonot Skot Vers 1978-2002. Budapest: Parnasszu Konyvek, pp. 86-7.

Book Chapter

MacNeil K (2004) faclan, eich-mhara. In: Intimate Expanses: XXV Scottish Poems 1978-2002. Edinburgh/Manchester: Carcanet/Scottish Poetry Library.

Authored Book

MacNeil K (2001) Be Wise, Be Otherwise: Ideas and Advice for Your Kind of Person. Edinburgh: Canongate Books. https://www.amazon.co.uk/Be-Wise-Otherwise-Advice-Person/dp/1841951102/ref=la_B001K82SYW_1_9?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1500471283&sr=1-9

Edited Book

MacNeil K & Finlay A (eds.) (2000) Wish I Was Here: A Scottish Multicultural Anthology. Edinburgh: Pocketbooks. https://www.amazon.co.uk/Wish-I-Was-Here-Pocketbooks-x/dp/0748662812/ref=la_B001K82SYW_1_5?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1500472294&sr=1-5

Book Chapter

MacNeil K (1999) Poems. In: Friends and Kangaroos. New Writing Scotland, 17. Glasgow: Association for Scottish Literary Studies, p. 104.

Authored Book

MacNeil K (1998) Love and Zen in the Outer Hebrides. Edinburgh: Canongate Books. https://www.amazon.co.uk/d/Books/Love-Outer-Hebrides-Kevin-MacNeil/0862418127