NEW BOOK, 'FOR THE SAFETY OF ALL' COMING OCTOBER 2020...

Praise for As the Women Lay Dreaming:

'A powerful novel… A poignant exploration of love, loss and survivor’s guilt.'
Nick Rennison, Sunday Times

'It’s the kind of book you want to read again as soon as you finish it,
because you know there is so much that will be revealed on that second reading.'

Alan Massie, The Scotsman

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A lockdown poem

Today I saw myself as I might have been
some fifty years ago, a youngster clambering rocks
as he slipped the ties that bind
their kind these days round laptop screen and X-box.
Who knows what he’ll find
as he explores both moor and shoreline,
ignoring the chill of the occasional snowflake
whirling like these terns reeling round the nearby beach?
I saw, too, a cock-sparrow among branches,
a clutch of buds and blossoms crammed within his beak,
scratching out a nest he’ll build now and in the coming weeks,
like that young lad preparing for his future
scaling rock and wondering how much farther he can reach.

The novel 'As The Women Lay Dreaming' by Donald S Murray has been shortlisted for this year's Paul Torday Memorial Prize.

The novel is set amid the tragedy of the January 1, 1919 night-time shipping disaster involving the HMY Iolaire which foundered on rocks near Stornoway Harbour in a storm with the loss of 205 men.

Donald, who now stays in Shetland said: “I feel thrilled and slightly nervous that the book has reached these dizzy heights.

A young filmmaker based on the Isle of Lewis will be producing the movie based on The Women Lay Dreaming, the acclaimed new novel by Lewis writer Donald S Murray exploring how generations of the same family were affected by the legacy of the tragedy, which struck when a naval yacht crashed into rocks near Stornoway in the early hours of New Year’s Day, 1919.

The project, which has won the backing of a new talent project to find “Scotland’s filmmakers of the future” being funded by the BBC and Channel 4, is being undertaken by John Murdo MacAulay, aged 25.

The Scotsman newspaper reports that:

At six o’clock (or so) this morning,

they broke out of social isolation,
their songs a mix of celebration,
wooing, warning
as they rejoiced in close proximity
within a garden lined and edged by trees.
 
Did I envy them - these starlings, sparrows?
Yes - for the way they recklessly embraced
their neighbour’s plumage,
squabbled beak to face,
swirled into the distance,
 
Unlike those of us all bunkered down,
the grounded human race.
 
DSM
 
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A different view from isolation

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