How Live Literature Can Help You Host an Author Event

Author Jacqueline Wilson with schoolchildren
Category: Live Literature

It’s the final countdown to apply for Live Literature sessions! The deadline is Wednesday 30 September.

Live Literature helps you bring writers, poets, illustrators and storytellers to your school, library, community group or local area. We’ll pay half of their fee and cover their travel and accommodation expenses.

But what is a session? More importantly, what can you do with it?

What is a session? More importantly, what can you do with it?

A session is one visit, for one hour, with one author. It is a building block: you can apply for as many sessions as you can use and that your budget can support to make residencies, projects and events programmes happen in your community. Apply for three sessions to hold a panel event with three authors, or apply for sessions to have someone visit your class once a month!

What are the benefits of working with Live Literature?

  • We have a database of over 650 writers, poets, performance poets, storytellers, playwrights, illustrators, graphic novelists and cartoonists to choose from. You can select an author based anywhere in Scotland – we cover their travel and accommodation expenses

  • Scottish Book Trust can help you promote your event on social media – our Twitter account, @ScottishBkTrust, is followed by over 27,000 people, and our Facebook page has over 8,000 likes!

  • It’s great for budgets! Spend less on author visits and know how much it will cost before you even ask the author

  • Do less administration for author visits! We pay the author their full fee and expenses after the event, then invoice you for a fixed amount per visit (£75 plus VAT)

  • Get help at every stage, whether you’re organising your first or fiftieth event: there’s expert advice on hand throughout from Scottish Book Trust’s experienced team


Here’s how four people used author visits to bring books to life!

Kateri Wilson held a Comic Con in the James Young High School library and had this to say:

‘A team of three pupils, English teacher Stephen Toman and myself hatched a plan - a full day of comic fun in the library for 42 pupils. As we hadn’t done this type of thing before there were lots of unknowns - would anyone even want to come except us?’

Find out who attended – and what cosplay they wore! – here.


Bethany Christian Trust brought creative writing workshops into their work to build empathy, connections and create a safe space for people to write and share.

Bethany Christian Trust supports around 6,000 homeless and vulnerable people every year in Scotland, helping them to find, equip and maintain a home within their local community. Their Edinburgh writing group has gone from strength to strength and is regularly featured in the charity’s magazine, The Bugle.

‘The value of these sessions wasn’t just in the words, but in what accompanied them. We didn’t just write, we read poems too, and we talked and shared experience and history. This is the real power of writing: it connects us to what is important in our world and beyond.’ – John Glenday

Find out more


Rhona Findlay at Inverkip Primary School said:

‘This was my main reason for applying for Live Literature – to allow the children to meet the author whose words they had been reading and whose ideas they had used to create drawings, writing and games. The visit was a huge success.’

Read more about Lari Don’s visit to Rhona’s class.


Alistair Lawrie at Stonehaven Scrievars Writing Group was pleasantly surprised by how easy it was to bring an author to work with the group:

Why don’t we try to get a writer to come to speak to our group?’ asked one member as she arrived. Why not? I thought, and then spent several weeks putting off what I expected would be arduous and time consuming.

My fears proved groundless.

Find out what happened next!


How to apply

What are you waiting for? Apply now, apply here and find out what you can do!