18 - Alan Bissett: Novelist, Screenwriter, Playwright and Activist
My guest on this episode is renowned author, screenwriter and playwright Alan Bissett. If you don't know him from his excellent prose and theatre work then you may know him from how active he was for the Yes campaign during the 2014 Scottish Referendum.
But to me, he's a novelist first and foremost. He'd probably disagree with that, yet that's how I got into his writing so I guess that'll always be my perception of him.
When I began studying Scottish Literature in first year of university, I was motivated (in no small part by some weird sense of cultural nationalism) to spend the time away from the course texts and to absorb other Scottish writers. Trainspotting is a book we're all familiar with, and naturally that happened to be the only Scottish novel that I'd read going into uni and the relatively older age of 24. That book then turned up as a course text in my first year because, well... why wouldn't it?
Re-reading it, and realising I had access to a huge library and a vast reservoir of Scots...