Ringwood February 2023 Newsletter – Issue No. 9.

Dearest Ringwood Readers,

Ringwood has been a flurry of activity this month! In this edition, we bring you a gripping look into one of our upcoming releases.

We also have lots of upcoming events to share with you all, as well an announcement about the winner of Ringwood’s 2022 Short Story Competition!

But first…


By Simon McLean.

   Welcome to our February ’23 Newsletter, which is packed with news, information and all of the gossip about what is shaping up to be a fantastic year. Where to start? Well firstly I should introduce myself, as the new, proud and enthused Chief Executive of Ringwood. Of course I couldn’t properly state that without a deep bow to my predecessor Sandy Jamieson, who founded the company and shaped it into the respected publishing brand that it is today.

   We have four wonderful books edging towards the printer, as you will read about in these pages over the coming weeks. A whole catalogue of titles are becoming available on our brand new e-book website platform and at least one audiobook being released late summer – a huge milestone for us in conjunction with Publishing Scotland. We have library author events, Ringwood presentations at festivals, and books that are being recognised globally. 

   Together, everyone achieves more, and here at Ringwood our team aren’t just proving the truth of that, they are building the Ringwood Family that will thrive for another 25 years.

Upcoming Events

Here are some events to look forward to:

George Barnsley

2nd March – George’s event will take place at 2.30PM in the Garrion Bridges Garden and Antiques Centre, Lanarkshire.

7th March – This event will take place at 2PM, in the Airdrie Library in Lanarkshire.

Flora Johnston

6th March – East Dunbartonshire Local History Month.

Flora is leading a workshop in the William Patrick Library, Glasgow. She will be discussing how historical material can be a source of literary inspiration.

Participants will have the opportunity to use local history collections to serve as creative writing prompts. And the chance to buy a signed copy of Flora’s novel, What You Call Free.

Reserve a free ticket on Eventbrite here.

A Ringwood Event

21st March – Ringwood is taking part in ‘Libraries Day’ at Dundee Central Library.

The event is organised by Publishing Scotland and we will be presenting our 2023 titles!

This will take place from 9.30AM – 12.30PM.

Seán Damer

22nd March – ‘The Glasgow Irish: Writing a Historical Novel.’

Seán will be speaking at and signing his novel, Those Tyrannising Landlords, at Hillhead Library in Glasgow. This event will take place at 6.30PM.

Keep an eye on our social media pages where we will be sharing more information on how to reserve a ticket for this event.

Ringwood’s AGM Meeting:

By Megan Gibson.

   Ringwood hosted our annual AGM night on 9th of February, in which our interns, authors and board members alike had the chance to socialise over some good food and book talk. 

   The night featured entertaining and informative speeches from Sandy Jamieson, Mridula Sharma, Shannon Genereau and Simon McLean, who spoke about their roles, the origins of Ringwood and what they all hoped for the future.

    Following a short interval, the AGM portion of the night began. Hosted by Chair, Lynsey Smith, the Board elected roles for 2023 as follows:

Chair – Lynsey Smith.

Directors (re-elected) – Isobel Freeman, Marie Claire Jones, Simon McLean and Sandy Jamieson.

   Furthermore, Ringwood was ecstatic to elect and welcome two new Board Directors, Allan Nicol, a Ringwood author, and lawyer, Mirian Watson.

   Finally, the night closed off in memoriam for three members of the Ringwood family. The Board gave fond speeches on the lives of Ringwood authors, Brendan McLaughlin and Leela Soma, as well as Board member, Jo Kelly. Formal Appreciations of all three will be appearing on the Ringwood website in the near future.

   The night was enjoyed greatly by all, and we hope to welcome many more faces new and old to our next event!

More From Our Upcoming Releases!

Bodysnatcher by Carol Margaret Davison.

By Bodysnatcher’s Marketing Team.

   Did you see the victim stories posted this month across our social media? Stay tuned next month to learn more…

George Barnsley’s The Lanarkshire Police Chronicles.

February Events at Rutherglen Library & More!

By Megan Gibson.

   On the 9th of February, George Barnsley spoke at an event hosted by the Lanarkshire Family Historical Society. The event was held via Zoom and attended by audience members as far away as Canada and the USA.

   George discussed his new novel, The Lanarkshire Police Chronicles, explaining the background of the Lanarkshire Police Historical Society, and cases featured in the book, such as that of Isabella Rankine. He then went on to discuss the cases of DS Hunt and PC Taylor. In addition to the current campaign being run by himself and the families, for posthumous recognition of not only Taylor and Hunt’s bravery, but the sacrifice of all emergency service personnel who lose their lives in service. 

   We are pleased to report that George’s talk was well received and stimulated good discussion amongst the audience regarding his important campaign.

   George did a further talk at Rutherglen Library on Thursday, 23rd February, which we are glad to report was also extremely well received both in attendance and audience enthusiasm. 

Check out The Lanarkshire Police Chronicles here.

And keep an eye on our Upcoming Events segment for future events!

Ringwood’s 2022 Best Sellers:

By Jade McKeogh.

Here are our Top Five Best Sellers of 2022. Make sure to check Ringwood’s Blog in the coming weeks for a more in-depth look at our official Top Ten list!

1. Ruxton: The First Modern Murder by Tom Wood, tops the Ringwood Best Sellers list again!

‘Two dismembered bodies discarded in the borderlands of Scotland, hideously mutilated to avoid identification. Forty-three pieces of rotten flesh and bone wrapped in rags and newspaper. A jigsaw puzzle of decomposing human remains.’

Ruxton was published in 2020, and has been a major success since. Last year, it was short-listed for the prestigious ‘Saltire Society Non Fiction Book of the Year Award’, where the jury commented that it was a ‘Fascinating and unforgettable’ read.

Ruxton: The First Modern Murder is available to purchase here.

2. The Lanarkshire Police Chronicles by George Barnsley.

‘A fascinating collection of true stories involving crimes committed in and around Lanarkshire across the past 150 years of Lanarkshire Police service to the community; from the thrilling to the mundane, from the minor to the murderous, but always absorbing.’

The Lanarkshire Police Chronicles was published in late-2022. It has been an on-going success story, both on and off the page; with a campaign detailed in his book finally beginning to make some head-way in Parliament.

To find out more about The Lanarkshire Police Chronicles, click here!

3. Sheila Garvie: Mastermind or Victim by A.M. Nicol.

‘Based on a sensational real case that took place in Kincardineshire in 1968 and the salacious details of which, with naked parties, sex orgies, drugs and alcohol, fast cars, violence and aristocracy, gripped the whole of Scotland.’

Sheila Garvie was another true-crime, 2022 launch that has done impeccably well! The author, A.M. Nicol, was a Procurator Fiscal Depute for 12 years, making this an expertly-researched documentation of the case.

Check out Sheila Garvie: Mastermind or Victim here.

4. Cuddies Strip by Rob McInroy.

‘Based on a true-crime […] it examines the mores of the times and the insensitive treatment of women in a male-dominated society. It is a novel about love and friendship and the need to break free from the ghosts of the past.’

Cuddies Strip was published in 2020 and was another book that made it to our 2021 Best Sellers. Novelist, Cathi Unsworth, states that she read it with, ‘A tear in my eye. I could hardly bear to read the ending, but it was beautiful.’

Cuddies Strip is available to purchase here.

5. The Ten Percent by Simon McLean.

‘An often hilarious, sometimes scary, always fascinating journey through the ranks of the Scottish police: from his spell as a rookie Constable in the hills and lochs of Argyll; through his career in Rothesay; and to his ultimate goal, The Serious Crime Squad in Glasgow.’

The Ten Percent was published in 2020, and was among our Top Ten Best Sellers of 2021! This book is noted to be frank and fearless in its examination of the role of the police in an ever-changing Scotland.

Check out The Ten Percent here!

Ringwood in The Scotsman

Tom Wood, Ruxton: The First Modern Murder.

By Aria Tsvetanova.

Ringwood author Tom Wood reflects on the aftermath of Nicola Bulley’s disappearance in his Scotsman column, comparing the media attention to that garnered by the infamous Ruxton case 90 years ago.

Read an extract of his column below:

   It is a source of dread for any police investigator that their case will become the focus of conspiracy theories and media intrusion. It adds to the anxiety of the victim’s families and it can seriously impede an investigation. “A distraction and a damned nuisance” as a dear old boss of mine used to say. The problem is that all leads, no matter how spurious, must be bottomed out. Public assistance is essential, public obsession is a vexation.

   The morbid fascination with what became known as “the Ruxton Murders” happened nearly 90 years ago, before the time of television and when the internet was beyond imagination. It seems little has changed.

Read Tom’s full column here.

Ruxton: The First Modern Murders is available here.

Get to Know Our Interns: Raquel Alemán Cruz.

Questions & Introduction By: Jade McKeogh.

   Welcome back to our newest segment, where one of our interns answers a few questions about their crucial roles within Ringwood Publishing! Getting vital experience in publishing can be difficult, which is why Ringwood offers internships to those who wish to break into the industry. Our interns work across a variety of departments, allowing them to obtain the essential skills needed for employment.

   This month, meet Raquel Alemán Cruz, who joined Ringwood over a year ago, and is working as a Senior Intern! Raquel has had a series of impressive roles within Ringwood, with her most recent being the leader of one of our proofreading teams and a vital member of our E-book Production Team.

Tell us about your background and how you came to Ringwood.

    I studied English Literature and History at the University of Glasgow and then went on to do an MLitt in Fantasy Literature. Once I had finished studying and was confronted with the question of what to do with my life, I decided to pursue my interest in publishing and to get some experience in the field. I had heard about Ringwood from a couple of my classmates, and so I pestered them with emails until they agreed to an interview! That was over a year ago, and I’m very glad that I put my fears aside and took that step.

What is your role at Ringwood?

   I’ve had many roles at Ringwood, but my most cherished position thus far is that of lead editor of Allan Nicol’s Sheila Garvie: Mastermind or Victim, which Ringwood published in June last year. I was humbled by the trust that both Ringwood and the author put in me, and I really enjoyed the process! I am also Allan’s support worker, and so I’ve had the chance to organise the Sheila Garvie marketing plan, to prepare promotional materials and to chair two book launches, at the Grand Central Hotel in Glasgow and in Aberdeen’s Books & Beans. I really value my relationship with Allan and what it has taught me about working with an author.

   Currently, I am a senior intern within the E-book Production Team, which essentially means that I am helping upload all the Ringwood e-books into ‘Glassboxx’, so that they can be purchased from the website. Additionally, I am also the manager of the Ringwood Zoom account and the leader of one of our proofreading teams.

What are your publishing goals and what do you enjoy about working in publishing?

    I believe that part of why I love reading so much is because the written word has the power to change us, to connect us to the world and to create stories that resonate with the very core of who we are or aspire to be. I enjoy working in publishing because I want to be part of that process and to contribute to that creation of meaning. My goal is to help authors bring to life the stories inside their heads and to share that sense of connection with other people.

What are your book genres of choice?

   Unsurprisingly, my favourite genre to read is fantasy. I also really enjoy classics and classical literature, and I have an interest in historical fiction and children’s literature. Right now, for instance, I’m reading Sistersong by Lucy Holland and Notre-Dame de Paris by Victor Hugo.

What would you like to see more of in the Scottish publishing industry?

   The fact that most jobs are in London sometimes makes it really difficult for publishing hopefuls based elsewhere to break into the industry. Hence, I’d definitely like to see more opportunities for entry-level roles in Scotland, as well as more companies considering the option of remote working.

Thank you so much for your time Raquel!

Ringwood’s 2022 Short Story Competition Winner

By Jade McKeogh.

We are excited to announce that the 2022 Ringwood Short Story winner is Maureen Cullen, from Cardross!

Maureen won the Alan Smith Prize for the best 2022 Short Story with her story Kitten Heels. Incredibly, Maureen was also our runner-up with her other short story, Next Stop. Recently, she was shortlisted for the prestigious UK V.S. Pritchett prize and has had her previous work published in short story collections!

Kitten Heels is available to read here & Next Stop is available here.

Keep an eye on our social media pages for more details on an interview with Maureen, as well as information regarding the award ceremony that is to be held in Glasgow soon!


Remember, submissions are still open for our 2023 Short Story Competition!

Please submit your entries to submissions@ringwoodpublishing.com

by 1st December 2023.

Entry is £2 per story and there is a maximum word limit of 3000 words.

Find out more about the competition here.

Until next time,

Jade McKeogh (Editor), Megan Gibson & Vicky McCormick (Assistant Editors) and the Ringwood team.