Weel duin tae Shane Strachan wha hae bin nominatit in Scots Media Person o the Year in the Scots Language Awards. Vote now!
The Scots Language Awards are in the Johstone Toon Ha, Johnstone on 16th September at 7pm. Tickets fir the ceremony are available tae buy here: https://handsup.link/SLA-BuyTickets.
We askit Shane Strachan o Shane Strachan thae speirins.
Tell us aboot yersel or yer ootfit.
I'm this year's Scots Scriever at the National Library of Scotland (supportit bi Creative Scotland), creatin new wark in response tae their North East Scots archives. Durin ma time as Scriever, I recently appeart on the front page o The Scotsman wi an article on spikkin an scrievin in Scots, have been on Scots Radio and BBC Alba, and have presentit awards at last year's Scots Language Awards and Scots Trad Music Awards. I've been Tweetin bits o my research and wark on the Scots Scriever Twitter accoont across the past year tae ower three thoosan followers. I also hostit the lanch o Eemis Stane's secint issue o new Scots literature, appeart at Granite Noir Festival in Aiberdeen and the Soutar Literary Festival in Perth, and ran workshops in schweels and Aiberdeen Airt Gallery.
Previously I presentit an episode o "Tongue and Talk" on BBC Radio 4 aa aboot North East Scots, and I've had ma Scots stories and poyems published in Gutter, New Writing Scotland, Northwords Now and various ither magazines and anthologies. I hae a PhD in Creative Writing fae the University o Aiberdeen aifter completin a short fiction in North East Scots aboot the impacts o the decline o the North East's fishin industries.
My first Scots poyetry collection, DWAMS, will be published bi Tapsalteerie in March 2024 wi support fae the Scottish Book Trust's Scots Language Publication Grant.
Whit wis it got ye involvit wi the Scots leid?
I grew up in the Broch (Fraserburgh) and Peterheid in Aiberdeenshire, so I've been spikkin North East Scots (Doric) aa my life, and been scrievin stories and poyems in it for ower 15 years. Initially, I wis scrievin oot o fear that the Scots aroon ma wis dyin oot, but there's been ahs muckle chynges since then that's seen a gryte improvement in folks' understandin, appreciation and celebration o Scots athort the board!
Why dae ye feel it is important tae use Scots in everyday life?
As weel as on the Twitter acoont, in ma Scots Scriever role I've made a pynt o communicatin we aabody in the National Library in-person and ower email in Scots tae help normalise hearin Scots in this mair formal, work environment. I aften dee the same in my job as a lecturer at the University o Aiberdeen and ye find that a lot mair folk start spikkin back tae ye in Scots that ye widna ken could spik it itherwise. It's lang past the time we were hiding oor Scots ahin closed doors!
Dae ye hae a favourite Scots phrase or saying?
I'll forever love hearin 'ye wee clype' because it wis summin I wis aywis caad as a bairn. I wis ay girnin aboot summin or ither nae being fair atween me and ma siblins..!
Is there a Scots speaker who inspires you?
My Nan is somebody that has refused tae spik onything ither than Doric Scots aa her life and she got intae a lot o trouble at schweel for nae spikkin English. She stuck tae her guns like a lot o my faimly has and it means that I've got a rich and varied experience o Scots words and expressions that I'm prood tae have inherited. I also jist love fan I get a text fae her because her wye o spellin things is affa phonetic!
Do you hear Scots spoken regularly in your local area? Have you noticed any changes over time?
I hear Scots a lot up in the Broch and Peterheid still, but less so in Aiberdeen, although it's been grand tae hear mair bairns engagin wi it in schweels there. A recent set o workshops I did at Aiberdeen Airt Gallery lookin at different Doric words for beasties and animals in Quentin Blake's draains showed ma that an affa lot bairns ken jist as much if nae mair Scots than their parents, and that their actually teachin up the wye,and theyll be able tae pass on a lot tae future generations. It's an excitin thing, as is the increasin number o Scots language publications thanks tae initiatives like Itchy Coo and the Scots Language Publication Grant.
Ony particlar career heighlichts
Deein the BBC Radio 4 "Tongue and Talk" programme on North East Scots wis affa rare because it gave ma the opportunity tae celebrate and raise awareness o Scots in the rest o the UK, as weel as showcasin ma ain work and that o the muckle talented scrievers o Scots in the North East includin Sheena Blackhall, Jo Gilbert and Mae Diansangu fa were aa pairt o the programme.
Wha’s yer plans fir the days aheid?
As weel as upcomin performances at WayWORD Festival (Aberdeen) and Wigtown Book Festival showcasin ma Scots Scriever work, I canna wyte tae release ma first Scots poyetry collection, DWAMS, wi Tapsalteerie next March!
Read more about Shane Strachan
The Scots Language Awards are in the Johnstone Toon Ha, Johnstone on 16th September at 7pm. Tickets are available to buy here: https://handsup.link/SLA-BuyTickets There wull be some grand entertainmint oan the nicht tae, includin a recital fae Renfrewshire’s poet laureate Shaun Moore,wha wis appointit as the region’s Tannahill Makar last year. talks fae weel regairdit Scots scrievers Cat Cochrane an Shane Strachan, alang wi musical performances fae celebratit multi-instumentalist brithers Euan and Lewis McLaughlin, an sangster Iona Fyfe.
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