Category Archives: News

News and Announcements


Photos from the Blue Lamp

Some photos taken at our event at the Blue Lamp on Sunday 24th April 2022.

Click on a thumbnail to view a slideshow of the event.

Sunday afternoon at the Blue Lamp

Blue LampJoin us at the Blue Lamp
Sunday 24th April 2022, 14:00 – 16:30
for a
n afternoon of stories, poems, music
and a surprise or two.

An event highlighting great stories and poems from past issues as we look to a post-Covid future. Curated by long-standing former editor and Aberdeen author Martin Walsh, the afternoon is also a tribute to him and Freda Hasler, multi-talented organiser of the Boat’s crew over the years.

Be uplifted, moved and most of all entertained by this pick of the crop of work from Pushing Out the Boat. Martin will be joined by a team of weel-kent authors and poets who’ll read their own and other contributions to past magazines plus some new work. The event will also feature music  by talented young singer Alastair Eddie from the great American songbook. And a surprise or two (think on-stage shenanigans).

Entry by donation to help ensure the long-term sustainability of the Boat. Plus magazines on sale – of course. Doors open 14:00 for 14:30 start.

If you wish, you can confirm you’re joining us by clicking RSVP on our Blue Lamp web page, which will bring you a handy e-mail reminder. Or log your interest on our Facebook page.

Pushing Out the Boat Crowdfunder

POTB CrowdfunderOn the 1st of March we are launching a Crowdfunder in a bid to secure the future of our magazine, Pushing Out the Boat.

Like many charities and arts organisations, we have been hit hard by the impact of Covid. It was a major achievement that we were able to produce a new issue of the magazine during a lockdown. But we were unable to launch it with our usual face-to-face event of readings and exhibition of art work. Our vendors were either closed or operating under severe restrictions for much of the last two years. And we were unable to hold or contribute to any other physical events. The result is that both our sales and income have fallen significantly.

Unlike many arts organisations we receive no state funding and are run entirely by volunteers.

Contributions to our fundraiser will not only help us produce our next magazine, Issue 17, in spring next year, but more importantly provide us with the resource to ensure that we are sustainable in the longer-term.

You will find all the details on our Crowdfunder page where, as a token of our thanks, we are offering a series of modest rewards for different levels of donation. Additionally, one lucky donor will receive a signed manuscript copy of  ‘Walrus’, a delightful new story contributed to our fundraiser by long-serving former editor Martin Walsh. The first chapter of this story is already posted on our blog where further chapters will follow weekly, throughout the fundraising campaign.

Don’t forget that if you are a UK standard rate taxpayer we can claim Gift Aid on your donation from Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs, increasing the value of your contribution to us by 25%.

During the  campaign, which will run till the 1st April, we will post regular updates here and on our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts. Feel free to like or share any of the posts there as well as passing on this news to any of your contacts who might be happy to donate.

Thank you for your help.

Still seeking a new Treasurer for POTB


Pushing Out the Boat magazine (North-east Scotland’s Biennial Magazine of New Writing and the Visual Arts) is looking for a new treasurer to join our team of unpaid volunteers.

We are a small registered charity (SCIO No SC044919). We get our main income from selling our magazine and holding events. Our main costs are printing the magazine and    administration.

Your duties would include:

  1. Management of our receipts and payments through our bank and PayPal accounts and in cash
  2. Using Excel spreadsheets to keep our financial records and prepare our annual accounts.

The Treasurer is also a member of our management committee. Whilst the basic skills required to perform the duties described above are essential, we will provide help and support on other aspects of the role. A general interest in the arts would be an asset but is not essential.

We are a friendly group of volunteers whose meetings and occasional events are held in or near Aberdeen. Please browse our website to get a feel for what we do.

Contact us at to discuss this opportunity. If you’re interested and qualified, we’ll invite you to meet a small group of trustees to confirm that we’re suited for each other.

This is a re-advertisement as our chosen candidate was unable to join us due to family commitments.

Seasons Greetings from Pushing Out the Boat

Welcome to Pushing Out the Boat‘s seasonal newsletter, our round-up of 2021 and a look forward to 2022.

Let’s start with our most important news.

In still-challenging circumstances, we managed to publish Issue 16 of Pushing Out the Boat in May this year. You may already have purchased a copy. If you haven’t or if you’re looking for that ideal Christmas present for friends and family, pop into one of our Scottish vendors to pick up copies or go to our online shop to order any of the wonderful issues we have in stock.

As Sheila Templeton writes in the foreword to Issue 16, ‘there’s heartbreak … acute observation of love and loss … necessary solace …  balm during tough times  … dark themes of death …moving, engaging, riveting stories.’ What better endorsement could we want? You can read more about it and take a peek inside on the Issue 16 web page.

We make no apology for starting our newsletter promoting the merits of Pushing Out the Boat as a gift. Like every arts-based organisation we struggled with the impact of Covid lockdowns. It’s a tribute to the many team members involved that we both produced and launched Issue 16 without once being able to meet face-to-face. You can find video clips of work read at the launch on our website.

Covid and its impact meant that we have also felt unable to stage any other live events during the year, although perceptive fans will have spotted the sneak preview of Issue 16 on offer at an online Books and Beans poetry event in March and further goodies in our joint session with Leopard Arts at the Aberdeen University WayWORD festival in September.Watch out for news of what we hope will be our first post-covid live event in Aberdeen next Spring.

Looking forward, we have also formalised the commitment we’ve met in practice for many years – to confirm that our magazine is a biennial publication, with the next issue coming out in spring 2023 and submissions sought in summer/early autumn 2022. Something to look out for if you’re a potential contributor.

Your Pushing Out the Boat crew is hale and hearty and looking forward to its next voyage. But lockdowns and their consequences have had an inevitable financial impact on a small charity such as ours, that receives no public funding. Which is all the more reason for us to urge your continued support by buying the magazine or even, if you’re so minded, making a donation to help keep us afloat.

Finally, whether you’re a reader, a writer, an artist, or just a friend of Pushing Out the Boat, we wish you all that’s best for the Christmas season and a better New Year.

Celebrating St Andrew’s Day in the USA

Are you one of the many American citizens with Scottish heritage? Why not celebrate St Andrew’s Day this year on November 30 by ordering a copy of the latest Pushing Out the Boat? One of Scotland’s leading magazines of new writing and visual art, Pushing Out the Boat includes poetry, prose and art from all over Scotland and from further afield. Get copies from our new US-based distributor. Orders are despatched by USPS and billed in US dollars. Makes a great seasonal gift too.

POTB Event at WayWORD Festival

Writers Showcase with Pushing Out the Boat & Leopard Arts
Thursday 23rd September @ 7.30pm

Join us at the Wayword Festival for an evening of online performances by writers
from Pushing Out the Boat and Leopard Arts.

Pushing Out the Boat is pleased to confirm that for the second year running we are sharing an evening of readings at the University of Aberdeen student-run WayWORD Festival with the emerging writers of Leopard Arts.

Pushing Out the Boat’s contributions will feature Editor Lily Greenall and a selection of authors showcased in the latest issue of the magazine, including Gabrielle Barnby, EE Chandler, Max Scratchmann, Nicola Furrie, and Mark Cassidy. Each of these readers has work featured in our recent Issue 16.

The Pushing Out the Boat/Leopard Arts event will be held online from 7.30 p.m. – 9 p.m. on Thursday 23 September. Tickets are free and can be booked through the WayWORD website.

The latest edition of the magazine, Issue 16, is available from the Festival’s official bookseller, Blackwell’s in Old Aberdeen, or can be purchased on this website.


North East Open Studios 11-19 September 2021 – see original art work and buy Pushing Out the Boat

Twelve artists exhibiting to the public for North East Open Studios (NEOS) and eight venues are selling this year’s Pushing Out the Boat magazine. Why not drop by to see their inspiring work and pick up a copy for just £5.99?

Here they are in alphabetical order with a link to their NEOS website page:

Susan Bedford, Mixed Media – Whinnyfold Reference 226

Bob Black, Painting – Crathes Reference 21

McAbery Photography, Photography – Aberdeen Reference 151

Violetta Pretorius, Jewellery – Aberdeen Reference 191

Elaine Reid, Painting – Aberdeen Reference 195

Morag Stevenson, Painting – Findon Reference 224

Gerrard Stott, The Artist at Garage 10 – Aberdeen Reference 75

Bruce Swanson, Jewellery – Crathes Reference 228

Lorraine Taylor, Painting – Aberdeen Reference 133

Val Thomson, Painting – Aberdeen Reference 235

John Threlfall, Painting – Crathes Reference 236

Jenny Watt-Colbeck, Painting – Auchenblae Reference 244

Pushing Out the Boat is pleased to continue its partnership with North East Open Studios and wishes all participating artists a successful NEOS 2021.


Sharp-eyed readers will see that the tag line at the top of the Pushing Out the Boat web pages now reads ‘North-east Scotland’s Biennial Magazine of New Writing and the Visual Arts’.

For some time the Pushing Out the Boat team has only committed itself to produce another issue once it was sure it had all the resources in place to ensure successful publication. But despite the challenges of being an all-volunteer group it has managed to produce a new issue on a regular basis every other year since 2013.

Team chair Aenea Reid said, ‘We published our latest issue, No. 16, in the midst of a pandemic with new team members and old hands taking on new roles. This, and the experience of the last eight years, has given us the confidence to formalise the commitment to producing a new magazine every two years, something we’ve been achieving in practice anyhow’.

Pushing Out the Boat trustee and former serials librarian Judy Taylor added, ‘The uncertainty of occasional publication is the bane of librarians’ and booksellers’ lives. Pushing Out the Boat‘s commitment to biennial publication will make it straightforward to subscribe to the magazine now they know the next issue will appear on a regular basis’.

The next Pushing Out the Boat magazine will be published in 2023.

USA Sales of Issue 16

We are delighted to welcome Heather Long to the POTB Team. Heather lives in St Louis, USA  and has been recruited to act as our US distributor for Issue 16. We shipped a box of magazines to Heather so she can despatch copies as soon as we receive an order for delivery within the USA. Two postage options are being offered – Media Mail or the faster, but more expensive, Priority Mail. See our USA Sales page for further details.