Modren Makars: Yin by Irene Howat, Ann MacKinnon & Finola Scott


The first volume of the Tapsalteerie Modren Makars series, featuring poetry by Irene Howat, Ann Mackinnon & Finola Scott.

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Bringing the work of three exciting contemporary poets together in each volume, the Tapsalteerie Modren Makars series showcase the richness, diversity and power of the Scots tongue, and have been designed to provide an essential introduction to the best in contemporary Scots language poetry.

Modren Makars: Yin includes work by the award-winning poets Irene Howat, Ann MacKinnon & Finola Scott.

Tapsalteerie means “upside down”, as the very sound of the word suggests. Yet the imprint’s first collection of Modren Makars features three wise women poets whose view of the world could hardly be more upright in its sense of values, more realistic in its knowledge of pain, and more infused, nonetheless, by love and wonder; and it augurs well for the future of the series, as it rolls out over the next few years.
– Joyce McMillan, The Scotsman

Irene Howat is a widely published writer and poet, with her work most recently and regularly appearing in ‘Lallans’. She is a recent winner of the McCash Prize, the Robert McLellan Tassie and the Hugh MacDiarmid Tassie. Irene worked as a writer for Christian Focus Publications and has around 60 books in print with CFP. Her recent poetry collections, “The Crackit Cup” and “The Gladness of Birds” were published by Handsel Press in 2018 and 2020. She was the editor of the Free Church of Scotland’s children’s magazine and had regular columns in the Campbeltown Courier (1990-2009), the Argyllshire Advertiser (1996-2009) and since 2009 the Ayrshire Post.

Ann MacKinnon is a retired teacher who has been widely published in magazines such as Lallans, anthologies and newspapers. She came runner-up in the McCash in 2017 and was joint winner in 2018. She was given a 2014 SBT New Writers’ Award for her writing in Scots, which resulted in the CMMA shortlisted ‘Nae Flooers’ (Tapsalteerie, 2015). Mackinnon received professional recognition from the GTC for her work in Scots in 2011. She is also an Honorary Fellow of the ASL and a member of the Scots Language Society.

Finola Scott’s poems are widely published including in New Writing Scotland, Gutter and Northwords Now. Selected for the Cydebuilt scheme, she was mentored by Liz Lochead. A seasoned performance poet, and possibly Scotland’s only slam winning granny, Finola has read at the Edinburgh International Book Festival, St Giles Cathedral, the Scottish Parliament and Aye Write to name only some venues. She came second in the Scots Language Society’s Sangschaw Competition 2022, placed in Paisley Museum’s Joan Eardly Competition 2021, is twice winner of the Uist Poetry Competition and is the winner of the Dundee Law Competition. A Makar of the Federation of Writers, Finola’s work has been commissioned by Stanza Poetry Festival as well as for many publications including Ethyl Smith’s series of novels, focused on the Covenanters Dark Times.


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