We are delighted to announce that our Pitch & Punt panel will be chaired by independent publisher, author and industry expert Keith Charters, aided and abetted by author Michael Malone, author and broadcaster Theresa Talbot and writer and creative writing tutor David McLaughlan. All four will be giving feedback to our participating writers and sharing some of their expertise on how best to present work to publishers. Tickets for audience members are £3 and are available to purchase along with our other Tidelines events. Read on to find out more about the panel.


Keith Charters runs Strident Publishing, one of Scotland’s main independent book publishers, and is himself the author of Lee and the Consul Mutants and three other titles for 9+ children. He’s also Cultural Enterprise Office’s Industry Associate for Publishing & Literature. Keith has presented and chaired at Aye Write and Edinburgh Book Festivals. Locally, he’s probably best known for chairing almost as many North Ayrshire Libraries’ Readers’ Days as Jimmy Carr has hosted panel shows. @KeithCharters


Michael J Malone is a poet and author, with ten books and two poetry collections to his name. Michael has worked in a variety of positions in the book world including bookseller, author, editor, and as a sales manager for a high-profile London-based publisher. His latest novel After He Died is due for release in September 2018. @michaeljmalone1


Theresa Talbot is a BBC Broadcaster, probably best known as the voice of Traffic & Travel on Radio Scotland.  Her career on radio has been as varied as her hairstyles; freelance comedy writer, documentary producer and presenter of Radio Scotland’s Gardening programme ‘The Beechgrove Potting Shed’. Her first book This is What I Look Like, published in 2014, is an anecdotal account of growing up in Glasgow and working on radio (said by some to be funny). She’s since turned to a life of crime with The Lost Children & Keep Her Silent, the first two parts in the Oonagh O’Neil trilogy, with the final book due out in 2019. @Theresa_Talbot


David McLaughlan has had fourteen books published (as far as he can remember) and pitched to many publishers. He has been a freelance writer for fifteen years and writes as Francis Gay in the Sunday Post, although he says the high point of his career will always be when he wrote Dennis the Menace for The Beano. David tutors three writing groups and loves helping other discover their inner writer. @davidwordworker