Author Insights

Meet authors published by Exisle Publishing and EK Books, read the winning stories from our frequent writing competitions, and keep up to date with the latest news, insights and tips for serious writers who are ready to get published.
November 22, 2022
How Great Books are Made - Interview with Exisle Academy CEO, Gareth St John Thomas

Gareth St John Thomas founded Exisle Publishing in 1991 and EK Books about 10 years ago. Before that, he worked at David & Charles and as an executive at global corporate publishing houses. In this interview, Gareth gives an overview of the journey of a book, from manuscript to complete final product. If you're an […]

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October 30, 2022
The Story I Needed To Have Read: Writing Competition Winners Announced

Several hundred entries pouring in from around the world kept our expert judges busy. We want to thank this community for your patience, and are pleased to announce that the winning stories for the "The Story I Needed to Have Read" writing competition have now been selected! A huge congratulations to the winners and finalists, […]

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October 30, 2022
Story: The Story I Needed to Have Read

The Story I Needed To Have Read, by Claire GaoRunner-up in the 'The Story I Needed To Have Read' writing competition There is shame in the crease of my eyes. And now the awkward way in which my monolid folds and caves in on itself, stretched and prodded by my adolescent fingers and Korean eyelid […]

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October 30, 2022
Story: Voice

Voice, by Xaria AmorosoRunner-up in the 'The Story I Needed To Have Read' writing competition"Your son has a special talent. His voice is a gift." The old doctor said, while the boy's parents smiled warmly, hope twinkling in their eyes. The boy, who was just five years old at the time, didn't completely comprehend the […]

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October 30, 2022
Story: This Is Your Grief

This Is Your Grief, by Jess CaryRunner-up in the 'The Story I Needed To Have Read' writing competition I hobbled back to my room on the maternity ward at the end of the corridor with my tray of dry roast beef and a chocolate bar I'd bought from the vending machine. I dumped the metal […]

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October 30, 2022
Story: Janda's Tale

Janda's Tale, by Peter GaskellSecond Place in the 'The Story I Needed To Have Read' writing competition Time stands still. Too shocked to move, all I can do is turn my head away from the glare of the sun as it rises over the mountain. In this frozen moment, at least I have forgotten how […]

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October 30, 2022
Story: Lake Fly

Lake Fly, by Kate PreeceWinner in the 'The Story I Needed To Have Read' writing competition A lake fly lives for five days, at most. The thought jiggled about Claire’s mind as she walked along the uneven stopbank. She didn’t think lake flies deserved any more time on this earth — she hated lake flies. […]

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June 2, 2022
A Sense of Place Writing Competition Winners

This Exisle Academy competition generated many entries, and not just from the U.K. but from around the globe. Mist, whisky, heather, and wild weather populated many of our entries. So did relatives both ancient and current, and their memories and artefacts often brought our writer’s home. One writer’s mother had Scotland wound into her senses. […]

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June 2, 2022
STORY: Belonging

Story by Gillian BreckellRunner-up in the 'What Scotland Means to Me' writing competition On the far side of the world from Scotland, my mother silently gave birth, clasping the hand of the midwife until their fingers were bruised and tender together. As I slithered painfully from her body, a few of my mother’s roots tore away […]

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June 2, 2022
STORY: What Scotland Means to Me

Story by Jane Va’afusuaga (nee Davitt)Runner up in 'What Scotland Means to Me' writing competition I was conceived in Scotland or, to be more precise, in Glasgow. My dad grew up in Pollok and my mum’s family were from Knightswood.  My parents met in a dance hall in the 1950s. My mum and her friend […]

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