Death Writes – Call for Scotland-based Writers to Join RSE Network

Published on: Author: Naomi Richards 1 Comment

DeathWrites today, January 31st 2022, launches its Royal Society of Edinburgh (RSE) funded Network. The Network is called COVID 19 as Catalyst for Writing and Discussing Death, Dying and Grief through Objects, Diaries and Collective Archives and runs from January 2022-January 2024. The project is run by Dr Elizabeth Reeder, Dr Naomi Richards, and Dr Amy Shea and supported by RSEThe University of Glasgow Arts Lab and the Glasgow End of Life Studies Group

DeathWrites will develop and support a Network of Scotland-based writers from across disciplines and genres to write and publish powerful, accessible work that will broaden and diversify understandings and conversations about death, dying and grief.

DeathWrites started at the University of Glasgow in 2017 when we held a series of reading and writing workshops centred around the topics of death, dying and grief. Since then, we have held a number of public symposia to act as catalyst to writing on the topic. This project is an expansion of these discussions. 

With the understanding that the pandemic has made mortality and inequalities around mental and physical health, death, and dying more visible, we will use this time as an opportune moment from which to create accessible writing that will reflect not just on the effects of the pandemic but also facilitate better understandings of illness, dying and bereavement in the variety of complex contexts we find ourselves in. The Network will act as a catalyst for its members to undertake and complete writing projects, exploring how familiar objects, diaries and collective records (living archives) might aid them. Outcomes will include supporting individuals to complete book manuscripts, an anthology of shorter work, and a collective, living archive website. 

The project will include three symposia (Spring and Autumn 2022, Autumn 2023) & eight writing workshops from Spring 2022-December 2023. Members should try to commit to attending as many of these as possible. 

All events will be FREE, some will be face-to-face and some online, and some travel bursaries will be available.

With this in mind, we are looking to recruit 25-30 Network members – writers – from throughout Scotland, with diverse experiences and backgrounds, from different fields and professions, who have a writing project they are engaged with and would like to work on within a community of writers. We are looking for writers who have already started or who have ideas for projects around death, dying and grief. 

If you have a project and you’d like to apply to become part of the Network please send us:  

1.         500-word description of your proposed project that involves death, dying and grief that you want to work on for the next two years. If there are keywords you associate with it, please do include these at the end. How you write this will depend on how far into a project you are. If you are at the start, say that, and write forward into what you hope to write/make; if you are further in, your goals may include more around networking and publishing, and say this too. If you have any particular skills that will be useful for the network and other members, please do note these too. We are looking to include as broad a range of voices, genres – including cross-genre and intermedial work  – and as many themes, knowledge/ expertise and experiences as possible. We are particularly keen to hear from:

  •         writers of colour and writers who have experience racism
  •        writers who self-define as working-class
  •         LGTBIQQ writers
  •         writers living in rural/remote regions of Scotland

2.         200-word bio

Deadline for submitting an application is 28th of February 2022. Decisions will be made by 17th of March 2022.

Please send your description and bio to:

You can follow us on Twitter @DeathWrites1 and on Instagram @deathwrites2022

We look forward to hearing from you!

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