Glasgow Women’s Library announce details of festival 'Open The Door' celebrating women writers and readers in May this year

Glasgow Women’s Library (GWL) prepare to welcome the fifth edition of their literary festival that puts women to the fore.

Glasgow Women’s Library (GWL) will host their 'Open the Door' women-centric literary festival in May this year with a full programme to be announced on April 1 (Photo: John Devlin and Glasgow Women's Library).

The ‘Open the Door: Scotland’s Women Writers’ will come to an online audience from May 20-22.

Inspired by Glasgow’s long history of bold, creative women, the theme of this year’s festival is writers who are artists and artists who are writers.

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GWL will be celebrating great women who weave the two practices of writing and art together.

From creative workshops to lively conversations, the online festival will ‘open the doors’ into the worlds of reading, writing and art.

The festival will feature contemporary writers and artists including Amanda Thomson, Kate Charlesworth and Sabba Khan.

It will also spotlight the work of historic writers and artists Wendy Wood, Edith Simon and Zarina Hashmi.

Each event will be live captioned, with some BSL interpreted as well.

A full programme for the 2021 Open the Door will be announced on April 1 this week.

However, highlights of the festival include: ‘The Open the Door Calm Slam’ - a safe space for poets who are ready to take their writing to the next level and an ‘In Conversation’ event between artist and writer Amanda Thomson and Shetland artist Amy Gear about the interconnection of the visual and the written in their practice.

A virtual discussion-based workshop looking at the work of Maud Sulter, the artist, writer and curator born in Glasgow will also take place.

Explaining why they have a festival just for women, a GWL spokesperson said: “It seems only right to celebrate this achievement of women writers with a festival of their own.

"To showcase what women writers have to offer that is unique. To converse with them in an online setting that is both inspiring and welcoming.

"The festival will be a landmark point of reflection and celebration, and acknowledgement of the unstoppable burgeoning in recent years of women in all literary fields in Scotland.

"For even though women are being published more than ever, their presence on prize lists is still dwarfed by men. Their work is reviewed less often in the pages of literary magazines.

"And so we want to take this opportunity to correct the balance of the present as well as the past.”

Adele Patrick, creative Development Manager, Glasgow Women’s Library said: “This year, with the support of our partnership Open University we are offering a host of amazing opportunities to be transported, get involved, be guided to new reading and feel the power of women writing.

"Having staged our first digital Open the Door in 2018, this will be our third online festival (we staged two Real Life ones in our beautiful home in Bridgeton in 2017 and 2019) and are anticipating our biggest audiences yet.”

Tickets go live on April 1 and will be available from Glasgow Women’s Library’s website.

All events are free to attend, many are open to all, whilst some are Women only.

All Women Only events and opportunities at GWL are inclusive of Trans and Intersex women, as well as non-binary and gender fluid people who are comfortable in a space that centres the experience of women.

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