Alan Bissett – Made me realise that you can be from Falkirk and have a voice, on both page and stage.

Anneliese Mackintosh – One of the best short story writers in modern times.  Her debut collection Any Other Mouth is a masterclass in short fiction.

Vicki Jarrett – Chum, personal critic, beer scooper and brilliant writer.

Samuel Best – Writes about supermarkets, knives and Disney films, amongst other things.  He also runs Octavius magazine.

Mairi Campbell-Jack – Quirky contemporary writer and poet.

Lee Crompton – Self-published author of thriller Digging Deeper, which should really be on the shelves at Waterstone’s.

Magazines & Websites

[Untitled] – Falkirk’s very own artszine.  And it’s free.

PUSH – Sold on the street literature (the streets of London).

The Grind – Journal of fiction and visual arts for artists in Scotland and the Scottish diaspora.

Gutter – Bi-annual publication from Freight Books, showcasing the best of contemporary Scottish writing.

Shortbread Stories – A repository of short stories, which can also be submitted to if you’re a writer and would like feedback on your work from the Shortbread community.


Amy Brownlee – Illustrator of Refrigerator Cake.  Contact her via Facebook or by emailing

Rebel Photo Art – Falkirk-based professional photographer Sonja Blietschau, who took the photographs on this site.

East Stirlingshire F.C. – It’s a club with a big heart and some very well-written songs, which are performed with enthusiasm and gusto on the terraces and from the stands of many a lower league football ground, regardless of the current league position.  Sponsor the club, sponsor a player, come to hospitality, join the Shire Choir, or all of the above.

I go to places like Annan and Elgin to watch The Shire. People think I’m nuts, but you’d understand if you came on an away trip. If we lose, then it doesn’t come as a massive shock (even though it’s still disappointing); but if we win, it’s happy happy days! I imagine it’s very different to supporting a team who wins nearly every match. On the 2nd of November 2011, Manchester City were 3-0 up to Villarreal with 20 minutes to go (a week earlier they put 6 past Manchester United at Old Trafford). The defence was passing the ball about to kill some time and the City fans were chanting BORING BORING CITY! I can’t relate to this at all. It’s them who are nuts, not me.