Edinburgh’s best kept secret is the Westport Book Festival, held among the bookshops, pubs and trendy art spaces in the city’s answer to Soho. Starting next Thursday, 13 October and running till Sunday 16th, the festival in its new autumn guise offers a varied and witty programme: new and established talents (the sort of people, such as Janice Galloway, who sell out at the summer festivals can be seen here in smaller, more intimate venues), open mics, plus a spot of book binding and tea dancing.
There’s plenty of poetry to enjoy, including a smattering of folk familiar to StAnza: book a place at Jo Bell’s workshop , catch readings by Rachael Boast, William Letford, Tracey S Rosenberg and Emily Dodd, or listen to Bruce Durie chat about what is thought to the first poem in Scots.
Check the full programme and take advantage of the generous ticketing system: 40 per cent of tickets are available in advance, the rest on the day. All tickets are free! The festival website is a mine of information: www.westportbookfestival.org