Andrea Johnson

I have lived in the Highlands for most of the last 20 years.  I have always loved writing and when I was a little girl filled countless exercise books with ‘novels what I wrote’.

When my daughters were still at school, I started attending a WEA Creative Writing Class and then became a creative writing junkie.  I went a number of courses including the most pivotal ones at Moniack Mhor. 

I began to write about the arts in the Highlands for Hi Arts and Channel 4 IDEASfactory websites and also had a couple of short stories published.  Two of my stories won the Pitlochry Theatre Winter Words Festival Fearie Tales competition (2007 and 2015).

My life has been full of surprises (not all good!) but a very good surprise was to be offered a job at Moniack Mhor as one of the Centre Directors there.  After two years at Moniack Mhor, I began work running Strathpeffer Pavilion and did that for seven years which was quite an experience!  Whilst the job was interesting, it literally left me no time for any of my creative interests as I was too busy dealing with the needs of others.

In 2014 life chucked one of those little ‘surprises’ again and I found myself at Glasgow School of Art doing a Portfolio Preparation Course in Painting and Printmaking.  I had hoped to go on to the degree but oops! another ‘surprise’ saw me out of action with ill health for the next three years.

Since returning to Inverness, I’ve been getting back into writing and joining HighlandLIT has been great for keeping writing at the forefront of my mind.  It’s also great working with the committee and feeling as if we are making things happen in the Highland cultural landscape.

I regularly take part in the Spoken Word events at Velocity Cycle Café and I am currently relishing working on a novel - the joy from the possible is sometimes better than expectation realised.  (In other words, it could be rubbish but I don’t care!)

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