online concluded today with an audience far greater than we could have ever squeezed
into the Albert Halls for a conversation between two of the biggest crime
writers on the planet,
Val McDermid in Scotland and Lee Child in the US.
The virtual Festival allowed us to break down borders and have authors and audience from across the world. Five Continents of Crime challenged time zones with J P Pomare, an award-winning Maori author nursing a midnight dram on one side of the world and Attica Locke having breakfast on the other. Throughout the weekend the chat forum was buzzing with crime fiction fans from as far afield as Australia, New Zealand, the US, Canada, Ireland, Italy, Austria, France, Spain, Netherlands, Poland and South Africa.
The new format didn’t mean we lost old favourites. The much loved cabaret, Crime at the Coo, normally sells out as soon as tickets go on sale with around 80 packed into the whisky bar but the virtual version, brilliantly chaired by Craig Robertson, brought in ten times that on Saturday night with a combination of archive footage, live performances and pre-recorded packages from various members of the Fun Lovin’ Crime Writers, some debut authors and a stellar performance from Festival Director, Bob McDevitt.
One of the most exciting new additions was the Never-Ending Panel, a rolling event which went on for four hours with authors and chairs coming in and out every 20 minutes. Chaos, entertaining and fun which pretty much sums up what Bloody Scotland is all about.
The transition to online proves that although Covid-19 may have temporarily floored us it couldn’t take away the spirit of the Festival.
Bob McDevitt, Festival Director, said: 'Bloody Scotland 2020 was quite unlike any other year but rather than being the poor relation of previous years, I think it will stand proud as one of the most enjoyable festivals yet with a truly dazzling array of international talent, a sizeable and engaged (often emotional) audience and just as many memorable moments as any other year. We may not have been able to visit Stirling in person, but we were definitely still able to go to Bloody Scotland!'
Bloody Scotland 2021 will be back 17-19 September 2021
hopefully in Stirling, possibly on-line or a combination of the two.
Thanks to everyone who has supported us this weekend.