Shetland Arts is committed to the development of reading, writing and other literature activities in Shetland and continues to support and champion Shetland Literature in Shetland and beyond. We are also committed to developing an increased participation of people in literature activities, in schools, in traditionally excluded groups and in the community at large.



WordPlay, Shetland’s annual Book Festival, takes place on the first weekend of September and features a wide variety of events including readings, lectures, workshops and children’s theatre.

Writers Groups

Throughout Shetland there is a number of creative writing groups which were initiated and supported by Shetland Arts. These are an important element of the development project and provide an opportunity for writers at different stages of development and experience to meet together in a supportive environment to share and discuss their work.

Community Writing Development

Shetland Arts works in partnership with different agencies, including the Independent Living Project and The Community Mental Health Team and Annsbrae House in order to support the participation of service users in reading and writing activities. We also work in partnership with Shetland Library and the Creative Links and Cultural Co-ordinator to support a variety of literature projects and events throughout Shetland.

Writing Residencies

We run a programme of short term writing residencies, both in Shetland Schools, in partnership with Shetland Islands Council and the Scottish Book Trust and in the broader community (supported by Scottish Arts Council, Writing Fellowship funding). As well as offering the resident writer an opportunity to develop his or her own work the residencies are aimed at increasing the level of writing skills in writers of all ages and allowing everybody the opportunity to discover and develop their creative potential.

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