Sara Maitland likes to think of herself as a hermit. To reach her house, set alone on a remote moor in the depths of the Galloway countryside, is an adventure in itself.
It’s the perfect location for the author of How To Be Alone and A Book of Silence, her brilliant exploration of how she came to embrace a quiet and contemplative life, dispensing with many of the comforts of life, such as mobile phones, radio and television
Not that she has always been so unworldly – at university she was friends with Bill Clinton and she also worked as a scriptwriter for Stanley Kubrick. Until Covid struck, she also ran retreats in the Sinai desert.
Maitland’s fiction and non-fiction is infused with the twin themes of feminism and spirituality. An exceptional short story writer herself, she is fascinated by folk stories such as those of the Grimm Brothers, an interest that inspired her book Gossip from the Forest, which explores the connection between fairy-tales and forests in Northern Europe.
Sara is currently one of the mentors for Wigtown Festival Company’s regional writer development scheme. You can listen to an interview with her about lockdown life on the Wigtown Book Festival podcast HERE.
Read an interview with Sara Maitland HERE.