A. L. Kennedy

A. L. Kennedy bigraphy, stories - Author, comedian

A. L. Kennedy : biography

22 October 1965 –

Alison Louise "A.L." Kennedy (born 22 October 1965, Dundee) is a Scottish writer of novels, short stories and non-fiction. She is known for her characteristically dark tone, a blending of realism and fantasy, and for her serious approach to her work. She contributes columns and reviews to UK and European newspapers including the fictional diary of her pet parrot named Charlie.


Kennedy currently lives in Glasgow and is an Associate Professor in Creative Writing at the University of Warwick, having previously taught creative writing at the University of St Andrews. She performs as a stand-up comedian at the Edinburgh Fringe, comedy clubs and literary festivals. She is principally associated with The Stand Comedy Club in Edinburgh.

In 1996 she won the Encore Award for her second novel So I Am Glad.http://www.encoreaward.com/year.aspx?year=1996 In 2007, she won a Lannan Literary Award, was awarded an honorary D.Litt degree from the University of Glasgow, and her novel of that year Day was named Costa Book of the Year in the Costa Book Awards.

In 2007 she won the Austrian State Prize for European Literature. In 2009, she donated the short story Vanish to Oxfam’s ‘Ox-Tales’ project, four collections of UK stories written by 38 authors. Her story was published in the ‘Air’ collection.

In January 2011, she was confirmed as a candidate for the Rector of the University of Glasgow by students at the university. She subsequently lost the election against the incumbent, Charles Kennedy, M.P. on 22 February 2011.



  • Looking for the Possible Dance (1993) ISBN 978-0-7493-9758-6
  • So I Am Glad (1995) ISBN 978-0-09-945721-3
  • Everything You Need (1999) ISBN 978-0-09-973061-3
  • Paradise (2004) ISBN 978-0-09-943349-1
  • Day (5 April 2007) ISBN 978-0-09-949405-8
  • The Blue Book (4 August 2011) ISBN 978-0-224-09140-4

Short Story Collections

  • Night Geometry and the Garscadden Trains (1990) ISBN 978-0-09-945006-1
  • Now That You’re Back (1994) ISBN 978-0-09-945711-4
  • Tea and Biscuits (1996) ISBN 978-1-85799-757-6
  • Original Bliss (1997) ISBN 978-0-09-973071-2
  • Indelible Acts (2002) ISBN 978-0-09-943348-4
  • What Becomes (6 August 2009) ISBN 978-0-224-07787-3


  • Life & Death of Colonel Blimp (1997) ISBN 0-85170-568-5
  • On Bullfighting (1999) ISBN 0-224-06099-6
  • Luwak Care and Breeding (2010) ISBN 0-123


  • Stella Does Tricks (1997)
  • Dice (2001), with John Burnside

Selected radio

  • Confessions of a Medium (2010), broadcast as the Saturday Play on BBC Radio 4, 13 March 2010 and 1 March 2013
  • Happy Families (2011), broadcast on BBC Radio 3, 1 September 2011
  • Love Love Love Like The Beatles (2012), broadcast as the Afternoon Drama on BBC Radio 4, 26 June 2012