An English degree at Edinburgh Napier can be a springboard to getting your book published – that’s what undergraduate Andrew Barr discovered during his studies.
Graduating only two months before the Scottish Independence Referendum, Andrew was then surrounded by inspiration for his writing.
“It was a really exciting time for young people to get involved with the world around them and I think my studies at the University contributed to my curiosity for new ideas, my critical faculties and my understanding of current affairs in the cultural context”, he said.
“My studies in Scottish literature in particular grounded me in the knowledge I needed to understand events as they were unfolding across the country and I completed my studies by writing a dissertation on the poetry and politics of Hugh MacDiarmid. I also enjoyed the literature we studied from all corners of the globe, charting many different struggles and experiences through theory, novels and poetry.”
Andrew’s book, ‘Summer of Independence: Stories from a Nation in the Making’ was published in 2016 and he was pleased to discover he still had the support of Edinburgh Napier after graduation.
“I was delighted when the book featured amongst The Scottish Review of Books’ picks of the year,” he said. “It was great to see one of my lecturers turn up to the book launch even though it had been two years since I’d left the university. I think that’s a good example of the kind of support and encouragement you can find at Edinburgh Napier.”
Now, Andrew is focusing on new projects and believes that other students can follow in his footsteps with a degree in English.
“I’m currently working on a new book which I hope to see published in the coming years,” he said. “My time at Edinburgh Napier helped nurture a broad cultural understanding which I believe can be applied to many avenues and vocations, and I’d certainly recommend the course to prospective students.”