Dr Claire Askew was born in 1986, grew up in the Scottish Borders and has lived in Edinburgh since 2004. She is the author of The Mermaid and the Sailors (Red Squirrel Press, 2011) and This changes things (Bloodaxe, 2016). Her poems have won numerous accolades, including the 2010 Virginia Warbey Poetry Prize and the 2012 International Salt Prize for Poetry. Claire has been twice shortlisted for an Edwin Morgan Poetry Award (2014, 2016), and This changes things was shortlisted for the Saltire First Book Award, the Seamus Heaney Centre Poetry Prize, and the Michael Murphy Memorial Award. Claire was the 2017 Jessie Kesson Fellow, and currently works as Writer in Residence at the University of Edinburgh.
Claire has more recently focussed her efforts as a crime writer, and her debut, All The Hidden Truths, won the 2016 Lucy Cavendish Fiction Prize as a work in progress. It was published by Hodder & Stoughton in 2018 and was a Times Crime Book of the Month. Claire’s follow-up novel, What You Pay For, was again published by Hodder & Stoughton in 2019 and was Shortlisted for McIlvanney and CWA Awards. She is currently working on a third novel.
Askew has a MSc and PhD in Creative Writing from the University of Edinburgh. She has worked on projects to improve literacy for young people and adults with the Scottish Book Trust and the Edinburgh International Book Festival, and works as an educator for the women’s writing initiatives Write Like A Grrrl! And #GrrrlCon. Claire was the 2017 Jessie Kesson Fellow, and acted as Writer in Residence at the University of Edinburgh from 2018-19.
Her second full-length poetry collection, How to Burn a Woman, is due to be published in late 2021 by Bloodaxe Books.