Friday 23rd September
5.30 - 6.30pm BST
Are friendships the greatest love affairs of our lives? And why is it that boys don’t hold hands?
Award-winning poet Michael Pedersen talks about his prose debut, Boy Friends, an intimate memoir and moving tribute to Frightened Rabbit's Scott Hutchison, who took his own life in 2018. Interview and readings followed by a live Q&A with Michael.
First and foremost, Michael Pedersen’s prose debut, Boy Friends, is a rare and incredibly rich meditation on friendship, but it is also a tender study of grief and masculinity. Michael explores what constitutes male friendship by reflecting on all the boy friends of his life and asking questions like ‘Why don’t boys hold hands?’. This reflection starts and ends with the love and loss of a life-defining boy friend: Scott Hutchison. In 2018 Michael lost his cherished friend, Scott (best known for as the front man of the Scottish band Frightened Rabbit) soon after their collective voyage into the landscape of the Scottish Highlands. Just weeks later, Michael began to write to him. As he confronts the bewildering process of grief, what starts as a love letter to one magical, coruscating human soon becomes a paean to all the gorgeous male friendships that have transformed his life.
Michael Pedersen is a Scottish poet, scribbler, stitcher. He’s unfurled two acclaimed collections of poetry (Polygon Books) with a prose debut, Boy Friends, published by Faber & Faber in July 2022. He won a Robert Louis Stevenson Fellowship, the John Mather’s Trust Rising Star of Literature Award, and was a finalist for the ‘Writer of the Year’ at The Herald Scottish Culture Awards. With work anthologised by the likes of Pan MacMillan and Canongate Books, Pedersen also founded the prize-winning literary collective Neu! Reekie!. His writing has attracted plaudits from voices as luscious as: Irvine Welsh, Jackie Kay, Stephen Fry, Shirley Manson, Kae Tempest, David Shrigley, Charlotte Church, and Scott Hutchison.