Welcome, Orkney, Scottish romance

Gabrielle Barnby is an Orkney based writer of adult and children’s fiction, short stories and poetry. She is the author of  The Oystercatcher Girl and The House With the Lilac Shutters and other stories.

Everyone tells stories. Every day we talk, describe, ponder, gossip and imagine life outside our own experience. My passion is to transform these glimpses and wonderings into stories.

My first novel, The Oystercatcher Girl, is set in the wild and beautiful landscape of the remote Orkney Islands, Scotland. Mystery, danger and romance spill from the pages.

In the medieval splendour of St Magnus Cathedral, three women gather to mourn the untimely passing of Robbie. But all is not as it seems: what is the relationship between the three women, and Robbie? What secrets do they hide? And who has really betrayed who?

My collection of short stories, The House with the Lilac Shutters and other stories, was longlisted in The Edge Hill Short Story competition, and has been warmly received by the Scottish press. Both books are published by ThunderPoint a small publisher that began life on the tumultuous shores of the western isles.

Romance, mystery, Scotland, Gabrielle Barnby, The Oystercatcher Girl, The House With The Lilac Shutters

Take a moment to explore the events I’m involved with and find out something about my work. I write in a mixture of forms including poetry and short stories and have recently been dabbling in screenwriting.

If you have a response to something I have written please send your comments or find me on twitter. Reviews are treasure.

Romance, Scotland, The Oystercatcher Girl, Gabrielle Barnby, Orkney, love, forgiveness, redemption, Thunderpoint, fiction, debut novel.
‘… a beautifully understated story of deception and forgiveness, love and redemption.’
House with the Lilac Shutters and other stories by Gabrielle Barnby. Short stories, fiction, Orkney, Thunderpoint.
‘This is utterly original story-making of a very high quality, brave in its scope and range.’

Orkney Free Fringe!

Listen to some of my new work on 23rd March

2.00-2.30, Sunbeam Coffee House

3.30-4.00, Kirkwall Hotel 

6.00-6.30, Helgi’s

Orkney Free Fringe Festival, Gabrielle Barnby, Writer. Readings, Sunbeam Cafe, Kirkwall,

This year marks the centenary of the birth of the Orcadian film maker, writer and poet Margaret Tait.

Her writing was inspiration for my screenplay Rise which won the 2018 George Mackay Brown Fellowship Writing Competition.

Riding of the Marches, Gabrielle Barnby, Orkney, Screenplay



George Mackay Brown, writing competition, screenwriting, Gabrielle Barnby, Margaret Tait 100, Gerda Stevenson.

Pleased as punch to be announced winner of the GMB screenwriting competition this year. It was a privilege to find inspiration Margaret Tait’s writing.

Bridport Prize, Gabrielle Barnby, Orkney

Delighted to be shortlisted for the Bridport Prize with ‘Fluking’ a short story I wrote last year after visiting Bergen.

St Mary's, Stromness, Autumn Foy, The Heart and Soul of Orkney, review, Gabrielle Barnby

The Heart and Soul of Orkney, an Autumn Foy. Review from the Orcadian and Countrywoman’s Diary.

Magnus 900, poems, Gabrielle Barnby, Orkney, 2017. Will you bide a bit longer?

Magnus 900 – a reflection on a special year. Film produced by Start Point Media. Poems/reading by Gabrielle Barnby, Orkney, 2017.

Orkney Book Festival, 2017, Gabrielle Barnby, The Oystercatcher Girl, Scottish, islands.









Book festival review.

Norq from Ork, Gabrielle Barnby, The Oystercatcher Girl, scottish, Orkney, romance, thriller, mental health. interview.

Review of The Oystercatcher Girl by Sarah Norquoy on her blog Norq from Ork. Peedie interview as well.

Gabrielle Barnby, Sara Bailey, Orkney, book, festival, scottish, islands, thriller, mystery, romance.

Gabrielle Barnby and Sara Bailey, appearing in the Orkney Book Festival 9th-12th November.

The Scotsman, The Oystercatcher Girl, Gabrielle Barnby, new novel, Orkney, Writer

The Oystercatcher Girl, excerpt in The Scotsman newspaper.

Click here for Old News

New Writing

A Countrywoman’s Diary written for The Heart and Soul of Orkney autumn Foy.

Dingieshowe.Gabrielle Barnby, Orkney.

A poem inspired by walking to school


Wonderlust, poem, Gabrielle Barnby, back to school, orkney,

Book review – Magnus, George Mackay Brown.

Review, Magnus, George Mackay Brown, Gabrielle Barnby, Orkney, books.

Stromness Per Mare street name acrostic

Khyber Pass

Gabrielle Barnby, Khyber Pass, acrostic, Stromness, Orkney, poem

Poems written to celebrate Magnus 900.

Go to your knees


Magnus and the Crow



St Magnus church Birsay, Magnus 900, Gabrielle Barnby, Orkney, poetry