Podcast celebrates the local spik

An Aberdeenshire writing group is rejoicing in the diversity of Doric as it takes part in a popular festival celebrating North East culture.

Friday, 24th September 2021, 12:02 pm
Mearns Writers leader Alistair Lawrie
Mearns Writers leader Alistair Lawrie

Mearns Writers has produced a new podcast of poetry and short stories in the local spik as part of Live Life Aberdeenshire’s Across the Grain Festival.

Members first began podcasting during the lockdown as an outlet for writers to perform their work.

The Doric podcast is the group's third to date and the first performed entirely in Doric.

Mearns Writers leader Alistair Lawrie says the work ranges from lyrical, sad and nostalgic to childhood memories, satire and fun.

He said: "Whether you're fae Skite or Fogieloan, the Blue Toon or Steenhive, whether you're fae fisher folk, farm folk, a toonser or an inabootcomer lookin for a wee bittie o culture, I'm sure you'll find somethin tae enjoy in oor podcast.”

Despite not being native to the North East, acting chairman John Wigham-Shirt has published poetry and short stories in the local tongue.

He said: "The warmth and kindness of Mearns folk over the years opened the door to another language that lends itself to poetry, song and humour.

""Doric isn't my native language but it's my preferred language for writing poetry, with its musicality, lyricism, wry humour and rich expression."

Across the Grain festival is in its fourth year and kicks off on Saturday, October 2.

The two day event, which is primarily online, showcases new poetry, song, film and podcasts celebrating North East culture.

A team from Mearns Writers is also defending its title in Across the Grain's Doric Call My Bluff on Sunday, October 3, at 4.30pm online.

Places can be booked using via Live Life Aberdeenshire - https://tinyurl.com/x8vt4d3f

Mearns Writers has more than 40 members and was established 15 years ago to promote creativity and mental wellbeing.

It produces a wide range of writing, including songs, plays and essays, with members including several published and award-winning authors.