Nearly all the West Port Book Festival team are interested in hearing about opportunities for paid employment of one kind or another.
Will Brady: design
Will is a freelance graphic designer, photographer and writer. It is thanks to him that people pick up our programmes and say, ‘Ooohh, these are lovely,’ their eyes lingering on the delicate use of white space, off-beat ink splot and seductively graceful design. Sometimes we think we should just frame a few programmes and be done with it. Will is currently available for art direction, design, typesetting and photography commissions.
Andrew Neil: web developer
During the day Andrew is a mild-manned software engineer; at night, and sometimes at weekends, he masquerades as @nelstrom and plunges himself into the world of open-source innovation and social media technology. He straddles the art/geek divide, equally at home with creative flair and ruthless logic. Lately, he has been collecting Collective Nouns on Twitter, and encouraging people to Pass the Plot. He is also the best-dressed Edinburgh twit 09 and is the proud owner of a parrot (not alive).
Colin Fraser: social media
Editor of Anon, the anonymous submissions poetry magazine, and co-founder of constrained fiction website confiction.org, Colin is a writer and social media producer. He was a New Media Scotland twitterer-in-residence in 2009 and freelances for various literary organisations - including StAnza, the Scottish Poetry Library and the Edinburgh International Book Festival. Some call him 'Beard'.
Chris Scott: photographer
Chris (sometimes erroneously referred to as ‘Mr Donia’) fell into photography through a twist of Lamarckism and into the literary circles of Edinburgh through blind luck. While juggling employment with study he takes every opportunity to gatecrash any event he can find featuring his coterie of pet wordsmiths, and when not trying to be an ace paparazzo to the literati he tries to slowly revolutionise the photographic world by being generally nice to people and making them look their best. They say nice guys finish last but at least they aren’t universally reviled. Time will tell.
Isabelle Ting: Bookbinder
Isabelle Ting is a professionally trained bookbinder and printmaker who has worked for clients such as the National Trust, the Museum of Scotland and Edinburgh College of Art, and has been involved with the WPBF since its inception. In 2007 Isabelle co-founded the Owl & Lion Gallery in Edinburgh’s Grassmarket. In 2011 the gallery closed only for the Owl & Lion Bindery to rise like a phoenix from its ashes – only in West Port this time, which is obviously better. Isabelle may well be the busiest bookbinding teacher in Scotland, but she still finds time to appreciate owls and food. She originally hails from Australia, although her family traces its routes back to Mongolia.
Peggy Hughes: programme director
Peggy uses her communication powers at Edinburgh UNESCO City of Literature Trust by day (and sometimes by evening too). When she’s not there, she moonlights in many other masked guises: freelance book reviewer, co-editor of Anon poetry magazine; one third of Electric Bookshop, event goer, Guinness drinker and Scrabble fan. Peggy’s spiritual home is second hand bookshops, and she’s not as old as her name suggests.
Miriam Johnson: general manager: social media & fundraising
Miriam is from Alabama. She has too many degrees, not enough real jobs, and likes ponies. One of Miriam’s degrees means she never has to worry about the title line of a form again – just don’t ask her to deliver a baby in an emergency. Miriam works at West Port homestead Edinburgh Books, is the Managing Editor of the Istanbul Review and writes things sometimes. Sometimes they win prizes.
Nicola Bieg: festival officer
Unable to think of a better place to venture into the world of the written word Nicola moved to Edinburgh to study Literature and to try out the publishing trade. When her nose is not buried in a book, the native German enjoys swamping her friends’ apartments with useless (but pretty) little things created with paper, yarn and glue. The West Port Book Festival allows her to revel in her passion for art festivals and assists her happiness by surrounding her with printed pages.
Dave Coates: festival officer
Dave is a poetry aficionado and rookie West Port recruit of Belfast extraction. He is in the process of gathering information for a PhD on the relationship between poetry and memory, and often feels he should be indulging in a more lucrative hobby. To that end he has recently begun a career in amateur theatre and will be appearing in an adaptation of Twelfth Night, details of which are in the West Port programme. He will be growing a moustache for the occasion, marking his dedication to the medium as beyond reproof. He exceedingly rarely posts his work on his blog here.
Nicola Hopper: general manager: events & marketing
Nicola is a recovering festival junkie. She’s currently chained to a computer at the Festival and King’s Theatres where she looks after their Digital Marketing. For work she tweets as @edtheatres; for love she blogs as Finding Connery. She was attracted to Edinburgh by all things Connery and will only leave when an official bus tour and/or tourist attraction is set up in his honour. Her deadline for paying tribute to the sibilant Scot is 25 August 2013 and now all she needs is his permission, a bus and a giant moustache. If you can arrange any of the above, please get in touch.
Doug Dougal: festival officer
Ex-International street-performer, tent master, market trader, bar builder, copywriter, photographic model, one time bear and member of the Blackfoor tribe, Doug has the bio of an author and the skillset of a riverboat gambler. In later life a degree in publishing has been added for gravitas and debt purposes. Attracted to all things literary, booky and wordy, last year saw him loving the WPBF and this year volunteering to help bring it to the lovely publics. His role is, as yet, undefined but something creative, communicationy, distributory is likely. Live gig-ery and jiggery- pokery are a given.
Kayleigh Bohan: administrative director
Kayleigh spent much of her time at university pottering around secondhand bookshops in capacities both paid and unpaid while being breathtakingly efficient on behalf of the West Port Book Festival. By day, Kayleigh is Library Administrator at the Scottish Poetry Library. She has worked in events, sold shoes, cat memorabilia and birthday cakes, and would like to continue learning about all things bookish or spreadsheet-based for money or fun. Kayleigh’s mum is glad she plays trombone with Edinburgh Brass Band to “get her away from books.”
Lucie Whitmore: festival officer
I am an Edinburgh College of Art textiles graduate who loves screen-printing, embroidery and writing about the history of textiles. I’m not good with ‘free time’; my current projects include an academic research project at the art college, freelance print design for a studio in New York and carrying on with my dissertation work in the hope that one day it will just magically turn into a book. Currently, I spend the rest of my time selling tweed on Victoria Street. I am also a history geek, cake-maker and serious David Attenborough fan.
John-Mark Glover: festival officer
With a background in publishing, narrow-gauge train-driving and commercial window-cleaning, John-Mark currently works at the National Museum of Scotland. He has (bravely or foolishly) put himself at the disposal of the West Port Book Festival to undertake whatever tasks the imaginatively demanding Directorate require. He came by this post browsing the Creative Scotland Opportunities site, and, as a lover of Edinburgh, books, and all things eclectic, volunteered to lend a hand, blithely hoping the West Port Book Festival might help him too. His hopes were modest: maybe a chance to stretch some decaying creative muscles; maybe a contact or two: maybe just a warm fuzzy feeling at the end of it all. And maybe the occasional cake?
Jessica Johannesson Gaitán: festival officer
Jess is a transatlantic graduate student at the University of Edinburgh who reads in Spanish, writes fiction in English and complains to her family on Skype in Swedish. Nowadays often found with a drum, or on a hill. Jess has spent a lot of time in museums for work and play and has led creative writing workshops; when her dissertation is (finally) out in the world, she hopes to plunge back into fiction writing while tasting the world of publishing.
Agata Maslowska: festival officer
Agata is a freelance translator and interpreter. Originally from Poland she lives in Edinburgh where she writes fiction and poetry, plays her accordion and volunteers at the Scottish Poetry Library. Over the years she has worked in various capacities as an English teacher, theatre reviewer and proofreader. She can’t (and doesn’t want to) imagine the world without second-hand bookshops.
Hannah Adcock: festival consultant
Hannah is a freelance journalist, author, copywriter, editor, events’ organiser and jack-of-all-trades bookish. She has written for a wide range of publications ranging from The Daily Telegraph and The Sunday Herald to Practical Caravan (without owning a caravan) and The Oldie (without being old). She has also trained horses, published a survival guide for 20somethings and become irretrievably entangled in the booktrade. hannahadcock.co.uk
Hannah stood down as Director of the West Port Book Festival in 2012.