Colin Will

Colin Will (b. 1942)
Colin Will
Colin Will



Colin Will is a poet with a background in science and libraries who has made a great contribution to Scotland's poetry institutions, publishing and festivals in the first part of the 21st century. 

Full Biography

Colin Will is a poet with a scientific background. A librarian by (first) profession, he added to that a scientific degree, then a PhD in 1991 which combined both fields in research on the communication process in science. He worked as librarian for the Institute of Geological Sciences, and as Chief Librarian of the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, before moving into senior management of that institution until retirement in 2002. He was President of the Scottish Library Association in 2000. He has chaired the boards of StAnza and the Scottish Poetry Library, served as Chair of Tyne & Esk Writers, and is one of the team behind Dunbar’s CoastWord Festival.

From 1996 to 2015 Will ran the Poetry Scotland website, the online presence of the poetry broadsheet of the same name, and continued the webzine The Open Mouse for twenty years. Calder Wood Press was Will’s own publishing imprint, which ran from 1999 to 2016, mainly publishing poetry pamphlets.

Colin Will was born in Edinburgh, spent most of his adult life in West Lothian, and settled in Dunbar in 2000. He has travelled widely within Europe, and has also visited North America and Japan, China and Tibet. His themes reflect a love of people and the natural world, and he is interested in poetry forms of the East, writing haiku and working with renga. Moving to prose, he has written a book of haibun (The Book of Ways) and has published a collection of short stories. He has eight collections of poetry, and some pamphlets. 

Poems by Colin Will

Further Reading

Selected Bibliography

Thirteen Ways of Looking at the Highlands, and more  (diehard, 1996)
Seven Senses (diehard, 2000)
Sushi & Chips (diehard, 2006)
The floor show at the Mad Yak Café (Red Squirrel Press, 2010)
The Propriety of Weeding (Red Squirrel Press, 2012)
The Year’s Six Seasons (Calder Wood Press, 2013)
The Book of Ways (Red Squirrel Press, 2014)
The Night I Danced With Maya (Red Squirrel Press, 2017