Scottish author accuses ex-lover of fear campaign

A BEST-SELLING author broke down in tears yesterday as she told how she feared her former lover was going to destroy her career.

Janice Galloway says she was left terrified to leave home. Picture: Lewis Houghton
Janice Galloway says she was left terrified to leave home. Picture: Lewis Houghton

Janice Galloway, 58, whose books include The Trick is to Keep Breathing, Foreign Parts and Blood, claimed concert ­pianist Graeme McNaught, 54, launched a campaign to ­damage her reputation and harm the sales of her books.

Mr McNaught, of Mount Vernon, Glasgow, is on trial at ­Hamilton Sheriff Court and faces ten charges of placing Miss ­Galloway in a state of fear and alarm. He has denied all the claims against him.

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Yesterday, Miss Galloway, of Uddingston, Lanarkshire, told the jury she became ­terrified to leave home over fears Mr ­McNaught would turn up at events where she was to appear.

She said: “He had gone ­looking for me at places he knew I would be. I had a friend who worked at the bar at the Tron in Glasgow and he would tell me Graeme had been in looking for me, so I just stopped going out.

“I once turned up to a reading and Graeme had sent word that he was going to appear.

“I had to inform the ­organisers that this might ­happen because there were other writers there and he could have put them off their stride. That sort of thing make people stop inviting you; it could have put off my work life.”

Miss Galloway also claimed McNaught had contacted online retailer Amazon.

She said: “Amazon started something called the Amazon book system so people could find out a little about you.

“You could suggest changes to the information and Graeme got in touch with Amazon and ­suggested changes about me.

“I think he may have been saying that I hadn’t written books I was supposed to have written.

“Whatever the changes were, they would have meant ­something bad for my sales ­popularity. It’s very ­concerning because a huge number of ­people go through Amazon and tend to believe what they read on the web.

“This was an attempt to ­damage my career.”

Miss Galloway told the jury Mr McNaught taunted her and her husband Jonathan May when he started dating a younger woman called Alice, who had been a student of Mr May’s.

The court was shown a ­letter Mr McNaught sent to Miss Galloway which said: “Alice would love to meet you. She would sort you out. Ask ­Jonathan, he thought her a ‘bit of all right’.”

Miss Galloway added: “It was pathetic. It was like he was trying to provoke envy with my own husband.

“He used to point sexual put-downs at me. His girlfriend is younger than me and he used to portray me as particularly unfanciable. He talked about her perfection as opposed to my non-perfection.”

The trial had earlier heard claims Mr McNaught turned up uninvited at Miss Galloway’s home and said he was to be crowned the King of Scotland at a beachfront ceremony.

Mr McNaught is alleged to have said he was to “walk into the water” and wanted to take the couple’s son with him.

Miss Galloway and McNaught met in 1990 and had a six-year relationship during which they had a son James, now 22.

The trial before Sheriff Ray Small continues.