A collective voice for literature and languages in Scotland

Moniack Mhor opens its doors again to Scottish Literature

Moniack Mhor is has announced its new programme for 2022. The writing centre based near Inverness is opening its doors again to a full residential programme with a selection of fiction, non-fiction, poetry and crime writing courses and retreats.

Moniack Mhor will welcome a fabulous new programme of writing tutors including MADELEINE BUNTING, Scottish crime greats VAL MCDERMID, ABIR MUKHERJEE and LOUISE WELSH, Booker shortlisted author GRAEME MACRAE BURNET, award-winning poet and new Edinburgh Makar HANNAH LAVERY and poet HOLLY MCNISH, the highly acclaimed non-fiction writer, CAL FLYN, as well as bestselling novelists JAMES ROBERTSON, TIM PEARS, POLLY CLARK, and SARA SHERIDAN, and musician BOO HEWERDINE.

Moniack Mhor is thrilled to be back to providing a place of solace and inspiration. They are delighted to welcome key figures in Scottish literature to their beautiful writing haven in the hills above Loch Ness. Now more than ever, writers are embracing time together in real life. Moniack Mhor will also host an international residency for writers from all over the world in March 2022.

Moniack Mhor Writing Centre

Photo credit: Mirren Rosie

Rachel Humphries, Centre Director of Moniack Mhor, said: “Moniack Mhor has weathered the turbulence of 2021; we ceased residential activity in March 2020 when the country went into lockdown and opened our doors in a scaled-down way from summer of this year. I am thrilled that we are launching our full residential programme for next year. Having writers with us over the last few months has reinforced more than ever that community is one of the vital components for human happiness. Sharing words around the fire nurtures our wellbeing and fuels the creative drive. To have writers back through our doors makes life seem real once again.

 “We are currently working hard to review our writer development programme to see where the gaps truly are. These will be filled by new support schemes including a wider online programme, expanded mentoring opportunities, more international collaboration and courses and retreats with childcare. We are excited to be getting back fully to what we know, welcoming tutors, guests and participating writers with Highland hospitality to a space for creative expression.”

Viccy Adams, Literature Officer at Creative Scotland, said: “Scottish writers not only produce world-class literature to enthral readers, they’re also well versed at supporting the next generation of talent to shape and share their words. The glorious landscape and welcoming atmosphere of Moniack Mhor provides space and time for new and established writers to explore and hone their craft, with guidance and inspiration from an amazing array of writers at the top of their game. It is a joy to see Moniack Mhor come through the challenges of the past 18 months with a full residential programme, as well as continuing some of the one-to-one and online provision that has opened up their programmes more broadly.”


  • Crime Writing: Louise Welsh and Abir Mukherjee show you how to create killer stories by exploring character, plot development and tension-building techniques. With guest Val McDermid.
  • Writing and Walking: Madeleine Bunting and Chris Stewart will lead its first ever writing and walking course, delving into how to use the landscape and local history to inspire new writing.
  • Picture Books: David Melling and Vivian French will look at creating believable characters and strong stories that children will love.
  • From Research to Readership: Polly Clark and Sara Sheridan on how to find and use unique research material to create a transporting work of fiction or narrative non-fiction.
  • Poetry with Michael Pederson and Holly McNish with a guest workshop with Hannah Lavery, new Edinburgh Makar.

The theme of 2022 will be ‘place’ with Moniack Mhor hosting a writing and walking retreat with BBC journalist and novelist Madeleine Bunting and Chris Stewart.

In addition to relaunching its residential programme in full force, Moniack Mhor has weathered the Covid storm and created a whole new online programme including one-to-one mentoring for novelists, poets, playwrights and songwriters.

Moniack Mhor has adapted well to the changing circumstances of the last two years and has taken the decision to launch a six-month programme instead of the full year ahead, so that they can be more responsive to changing needs in the literature sector. This will allow more flexibility in their programming. Highlights of the programme for the second half of the year will include a summer retreat with childcare and a second autumnal writing and walking course.

Course bookings open to the public on Wednesday 8 December. Bookings can be made on the Moniack Mhor website: moniackmhor.org.uk

For the full list of residential courses for January to July 2022 see moniackmhor.org.uk

Notes for editors

Moniack Mhor  is Scotland’s National Writing Centre. Based in the beautiful Scottish Highlands, we run courses in a range of genres tutored by some of the finest authors in the UK and beyond. With workshops and one-to-one tutorials, our courses provide an atmosphere to fully immerse yourself in your writing. The centre also offers writing retreats providing time and space, free from distractions, where you will find yourself part of a nurturing writing community. Other support offered by Moniack Mhor includes awards, bursaries, mentoring, professional residencies to develop works in progress and a programme for young writers. moniackmhor.org.uk

Creative Scotland  is the public body that supports the arts, screen and creative industries across all parts of Scotland distributing funding provided by the Scottish Government and The National Lottery. Further information at creativescotland.com. Follow us on TwitterFacebook and Instagram. Learn more about the value of art and creativity in Scotland and join in at www.ourcreativevoice.scot

“The perfect environment for aspiring writers to dig down and find what it is they really want to say. It’s an enormously stimulating place to be” ~ Val McDermid

Moniack Mhor is such a vital force for Scottish and international literary creativity.” ~ Kevin MacNeil

Press contact

For further enquiries and interview requests please contact Claire Daly by emailing  claire@moniackmhor.org.uk or call the centre on 01463 741 675.


December 8, 2021