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Karen Campbell

Tuesday 5th March 2013; 7pm to 8.30pm,
CCA Clubroom, Glasgow.

‘In Process’ Masterclass with Karen Campbell


Local success story Karen Campbell has a new book released this month from Bloomsbury, entitled This Is Where I Am. She is visiting Glasgow to share the novel with us, and offer insights into her writing process.

Karen writes contemporary fiction, and is a graduate of Glasgow University’s Creative Writing programme. Before turning to writing, she was a police officer with Strathclyde Police; she has published four novels which focus on the people behind the uniform – The Twilight Time, After the Fire, Shadowplay, and Proof of Life (released in 2012).

In 2009, Karen won Best New Scottish Writer at the Scottish Variety Awards. In 2010, After the Fire was chosen as a Scottish Summer Read, while Shadowplay was shortlisted for the CWA Gold Dagger. Her fifth novel, This is Where I Am (about a Somali refugee living in Glasgow), is published by Bloomsbury in March 2013 and has just been chosen as a Radio 4 Book at Bedtime.

Karen was born in Paisley, and brought up in Glasgow (she now lives in Galloway). On leaving school, she attended Glasgow University, and studied for an MA in English, Drama, and French, before joining Strathclyde Police as a uniformed constable. Her first day in the job was made much more interesting by the arrival of a fellow recruit, who would eventually become her husband.

After enduring ‘rigorous’ training at Tulliallan Police College, Karen served in the ‘A’ Division of Scotland’s biggest – and most definitely best – city (also where much of her first novel, The Twilight Time, is set). Karen left the police five-and-a-half years later, on the birth of her first child, and took a career break to raise her family. Two daughters later, she went to work for Glasgow City Council, becoming a media officer in the Press Office (before going on to edit the Council’s staff magazines and other publications).

During this time, Karen was accepted for the renowned Glasgow University Creative Writing Masters programme, and began writing in earnest (with several short stories published in various magazines and anthologies). The Twilight Time evolved from some of these early pieces, with Karen completing her first draft of the book as part of her final portfolio. She was also awarded a Scottish Arts Council New Writer’s Bursary, before graduating with an MLitt (Distinction) in 2003.

Signed initially to Hodder & Stoughton, Karen is now published by Bloomsbury.

Tickets: £6 (£3 for SWC members and concessions).

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