Elsewhere: Commissioned Writing

We commissioned fifty authors to write short stories or essays on the theme of ‘Elsewhere’. Leading writers for adults and children from across the world took part and their wonderfully engaging and varied writing is available for you to read and download here. Many of the authors have also recorded podcasts of their work which you can find in our audio gallery and on iTunes.

Supported through the Scottish Government’s Edinburgh Festivals Expo Fund.

Horror Story
Horror Story by Kirstin Innes

The hotel felt like a place where bad things had happened, she’d decided. Something chilling about the uniformity of its too-long Soviet-functional corridors, their flickering lights…

Not Scotland
Not Scotland by Anne Donovan

The heat whaups ye the minute ye set fit oot the plane.  The brightness too –blue sky barely skiffed wi cloud…

Bain de Soleil
Bain de Soleil by David Vann

Williams College in Massachusetts. 1985. I arrived in ripped jeans from California. I’d been fire-walking, meditating, learning etheric surgery, hoping to become a mystic…

From My Vow
From My Vow by Jen Hadfield

Before I begin to describe my research visit to Mexico, in the Año Nuevo of 2008 (an account that will reveal that I'm a terrible traveller, being neither courageous, resourceful, social nor spontaneous), I need to…

We Are All Waiting
We Are All Waiting by Denise Mina

We are very angry for the first hour and a half in the queue. We squash up close to one another, mistrustful of our neighbours…

Surtsey by Doug Johnstone

She lifted a handful of black sand and squeezed it through her fingers. There was a gurgle and she turned…

Puerto Galera
Puerto Galera by Jason Donald

Rudi’s Bar sold the cheapest San Miguel on Sabang beach. Their fried rice was half decent and the barmaid was perkier than a kiddies’ TV presenter…

Vanishing Point
Vanishing Point by Louise Welsh

From this position I can see the slow progress of late afternoon shadow across the wall at the end of my bed. When the shade creeps beyond the top corner, turning it from stark white to a pale shade of blue-grey…

Sassuolo by Eleanor Thom

The name, Sassuolo, made me think of holes, cheese full of holes. I never saw any holes, but they must have had to dig somewhere because they needed clay…

Chicago by Allan Radcliffe

It’s dark when we leave the bar. The rain has stopped and the air is hot and damp, garbage-sweet. Beneath the streetlights the sidewalk gleams yellow, the ground a mosaic of footprints…