BIG LIT is back to celebrate its 10 years with dignity

Famous actress Annette Badland is among the names to appear at this year’s festival

Fearless in having to throw 5,000 brochures in the trash, organizers staged the first virtual BIG LIT as several authors appeared online.

However, now in 2021, the event is back to properly celebrate the 10th anniversary, bringing a live program to a community hungry for culture.

The festival is known to offer a rich diet in all things literature, be it talks, music, comedy, poetry, history, politics, biography or exhibition.

This year, events will be taking place at Gatehouse of Fleet from August 19-22, the festival is hosting:

Nominated for the Olivier Award, the actress Annette Badland who will share her love for Gertrude Stein and Iris Murdoch;

Karin Fernald, known for her entertaining lectures and theatrical talks, presents Jane Austen and The Slave Trade;

Booker Prize winner George Szirtes hosts a writers’ workshop and discusses his award-winning memoirs about his mother,

Queen’s Gold Medalist for Poetry Don Paterson, who not only writes amazing poetry but plays a nasty jazz guitar, is at BIG LIT with top jazz guitarist Graeme Stephen.

Among the many other guests are Donald S Murray with his new book on Scottish Lighthouses, Kirstin Innes (whose Scabby Queen book apparently had Nicola Sturgeon stranded), journalist Ian Dunt and farmer / author Patrick Laurie discuss how his Galloway landscape changed.

Artistic Director Chrys Salt said, “We also have a rich selection of local events, a youth program and a short digital program alongside.

“There really is something for everyone, it’s a program sparkling with literary talent, and since tickets went on sale we’ve seen unprecedented demand.

“We are dedicating BIG LIT 2021 in memory of poet / writer Brian Johnstone, a friend and colleague who loved BIG LIT and brought so many fantastic events to our festival.”

Tickets and full program details are available by visiting The local ticket office is located in The Crafty Crow, call 01557 814000.

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