Honorary Research Fellow
The University of Aberdeen
RIISS, Humanity Manse, 19 College Bounds, Aberdeen, Scotland, AB24 3UG
Olive M. Ritch (MA, MLitt, PhD) is a graduate of the University of Aberdeen and is the recipient of the Scottish Book Trust's Next Chapter Award 2020. She is currently working on a collection of poetry, which she hopes to publish in the near future.
She is a poetry tutor, critic, and an award-winning poet whose work has been published in many literary magazines, anthologies and websites, including: Poetry Review, Agenda, The Guardian, 2011 Hippocrates Prize Anthology, The British Journal of Psychiatry, the Scottish Poetry Library, The Poetry Cure (Bloodaxe), Don’t Bring Me No Rocking Chair (Bloodaxe), New Writing Scotland (18. 21, 29), Gutter (4, 10, 14, 18), Scottish Medical Humanities, In Protest: 150 Poems for Human Rights (University of London). Her work has also been broadcast on BBC Radio 4.
She was a co-founding editor of Causeway / Cabhsair: A Magazine of Irish and Scottish Writing, a biannual literary magazine, promoting all the languages of Scotland and Ireland , and published by the Research Institute of Irish and Scottish Studies, University of Aberdeen. She edited four volumes: 1:1, 73 pages; 1:2, 66 pages; 2:1, 74 pages; 2:2, 72 pages.
She also co-edited More Medical Remedies: Creative Writing by Medical Students, published by the University of Aberdeen (59 pages).
She has read her work at the following festivals: Aye Write! Glasgow's Book Festival (2019), StAnza Poetry Festival (2018), The University of Aberdeen May Festival (2016, 2014, 2013), Poetry Aberdeen (2012), Aberdeen Word Festival (2011), Off the Page Stirling Book Festival (2011), Edinburgh International Book Festival (2009), Torbay Poetry Festival (2008).
Her research interests are the poetry and prose of H.D. (Hilda Doolittle), contemporary women poets, the relationship between literature and medicine, and the uses of creative and reflective writing in medical education.
- ME33CW: Creative Writing for Medical Students 2016-17 (Teaching cover provided for staff leave)
- ME33CW: Creative Writing for Medical Students 2015-16 (Course Convenor)
- ME33LM: Literature and Medicine 2014-15 (Course Convenor)
- ME33LP: Literature and Medicine - Project 2014-15 (Course Convenor)
- Creative Writing for Medical Students
- Controversial Classics
- Further Info
Publications – Poetry
'Not Nuart Aberdeen' in A Kist of Thistles (2020)
'Roads to Dundee' in Scottish Review (28 August 2019);
'The Husband', 'The Wife', and 'Navigate' in Causeway/Cabhsair 10:1 (2019);
Haiku in H Q Poetry Magazine: The Haiku Quarterly 50 (2019);
'St Magnus Cathedral, 31 May 2016', Away from the Western Front website (2018): https://awayfromthewesternfront.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/Compiled-entries-over-18.pdf;
'Keep the Beat', Mycelia (2018);
'Three Young Women on the Train: In Conversation', Gutter 18 (2018);
'Cardiomegaly', Scottish Medical Humanities website (2018);
'The Hand Game’, Highly Commended in the National Poetry Competition, 2003, and published on Poetry Review website; re-published in A New Orkney Anthology (Kirkwall: The George Mackay Brown Fellowship, 2008); broadcast on Radio Four Poetry Please (2016);
‘A Message’, Commended in the Hippocrates Prize for Poetry 2011, and subsequently published in 2011 Hippocrates Prize Anthology (Bodmin and King’s Lynn: Top Edge Press, 2011); permission granted for republication in The British Journal of Psychiatry, 202:5(May 2013); and on the Scottish Poetry Library website (2016);
‘Beyond Words’, shortlisted for Bridport Poetry Prize, 2008, and published in Causeway / Cabhsair, 3:2 (2012);
‘Slainte Mhath’, Highly Commended in Off the Stanza Poetry Competition, 2011, and subsequently published on Stirling Council website;
‘When I Woke, Everything was the Same, but Different’, The Poetry Cure (Tarset: Bloodaxe, 2006); permission granted for republication in Don’t Bring Me No Rocking Chair (Tarset: Bloodaxe, 2013);
‘Mr Hu, the Executioner’ In Protest: 150 Poems for Human Rights (London: University of London, 2013);
‘Head Full of Smiles’ The Guardian website (2005):‘H.M.S. Hampshire’ Agenda – Requiem: The Great War, 48:3-4 (2014);
‘This Land’ The Flight of the Turtle: New Writing Scotland 29 (Glasgow: ASLS, 2011);
‘Making Tracks’ and ‘Too Big For Her Books’ Milking the Haggis: New Writing Scotland 21 (Glasgow: ASLS, 2004);
‘A Poem for Edwin’ Going up Ben Nevis in a Bubble Car: New Writing Scotland 18 (Glasgow: ASLS, 2001);
‘Night-Space’, ‘Seer’, and ‘Time’ H.D. Newsletter website (2012);
Returns of the Past (extract) Gutter 14 (2016);
‘Washed Up’ Northwords Now 32:3 (2016);
‘Like Hagar’ and ‘Two-Faced’ Gutter 10 (2014);
‘Dusting the Dark’, ‘The Leaving’, ‘In Two Minds’, and ‘The Master’ Gutter 4 (2011);
‘Dr Doolittle at Dinner’ and ‘In Hiding’ Causeway / Cabhsair: A Magazine of Irish and Scottish Writing, 7.1 (2016);
‘La Villa’ A New Orkney Anthology (Kirkwall: The George Mackay Brown Fellowship, 2008);
‘A Sweet Surprise’ – There’s a Poem in my Soup (Aberdeen: Koo Press, 2007);
'Demolition of Fore Close, 1974’ #Write City (Aberdeen: Aberdeen City Libraries, 2015);
‘the red glove’ – Pushing out the Boat 3 ( 2003);
'Mother and Daughter’, ‘The Big House’, and ‘Blood Ties’ Pushing out the Boat 2 (2002).
2018: Away from the Western Front Creative Writing Competition (shortlisted);
2011: Hippocrates Prize for Poetry and Medicine (commended);
2011: Ilkley Poetry Competition (long-listed);
2011: Off the Stanza Poetry Competition (highly commended).
2008: Bridport Poetry Prize (shortlisted);
2008: Torbay Poetry Competition (highly commended);
2006: Calder Prize for Poetry – University of Aberdeen (joint-winner);
2003: National Poetry Competition (commendation);
1991: Ottakar’s Poetry Competition (second prize).
Creative Writing Presentations/Readings:
2019: Aye Write! Glasgow's Book Festival;
2018: StAnza Festival;
2016: The University of Aberdeen May Festival;
2014: The University of Aberdeen May Festival;
2013: The University of Aberdeen May Festival;
2012: Poetry Aberdeen: Hello to all this;
2011: Aberdeen Word Festival;
2011: Off the Page Stirling Book Festival;
2009: The Lonely Page: A Creative Writing Conference, Queen’s University, Belfast;
2009: Moving Forward Conference, University of Aberdeen;
2009: Edinburgh International Book Festival;
2008: Torbay Poetry Festival.