Gillian uses fiction to explore the world of illness. Her novel, Brodie, is represented by Clare Coombes of the Liverpool Literary Agency. In collaboration with Georgi Gill, she is working on the madcap adventure novel, Socially Responsible Looters.
Brodie: A novel narrated by an object, to explore the relationship between object and illness (with specific reference to Multiple Sclerosis). The narrator, Brodie, is a copy of The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie, who passes from hand to hand over several decades, picking up the life stories of Brodie’s guardians as they go. Read an extract here. For an insight into the genesis of Brodie, see Gillian’s blog post for the MS Society
Libbe: A short story about a fictional Scottish village and the newcomer who wins the villagers over thanks to a mobile library. Published in The Common Breath. https://thecommonbreath.com/blog48.html
The Appointment: A short story exploring the experience of illness, dealing with its subject with humour and empathy. Published at The Interpreter’s House. https://theinterpretershouse.org/shirreffs74
Gillian also has guest-written blog posts for the MS Society, among others:
Poetry and Plays
Gillian has written various poems, especially as a way to alleviate chronic pain. Some of her poems exploring the experience of illness have appeared in MSConnect, The Second Tide and Tracks in the Sand.
In 2015, she was selected for the Playwrights’ Studio, Scotland mentoring programme and was mentored by Peter Arnott. The result of this was a one-act play performed in Wisconsin in 2016.
Other Publications of Interest
Dostoyevsky Wannabe: Glasgow
Gillian has been working with Georgi Gill on a literary adventure that’s part-journal part-pen pal letters. An extract from this project, Singular Together, will be published in the upcoming Dostoyevsky Wannabe: Glasgow anthology.
Stories from Home
Gillian has two stories in the anthology Stories from Home edited by Hayleigh Barclay and Sylvia Hehir. All proceeds from the book will be donated to the Ambulance Staff Charity. Gillian’s stories appear alongside contributions from Louise Welsh, Zoe Strachan, Una McCormack, Carolyn Jess-Cooke, Olga Wojtas, Leela Soma, Colin Herd, and more.
Tales from a Cancelled Country
This anthology from thi wurd celebrates new Scottish voices and the fiction collected offers snapshots of a place through the eyes of its inhabitants, revealing their hidden fears and desires as well as their struggle to find their own voices. Gillian’s Croy Shore is included.