Alan has been a journalist for over 30 years. He was deputy and managing editor at The Scotsman, and Associate Editor of the Sunday Herald. He has contributed to numerous publications, including The TLS, The New Yorker and The Melbourne Age, and edited several acclaimed anthologies – The Assassin’s Cloak, The Secret Annexe, The Country Dairies (Canongate), and Glasgow: The Autobiography (Birlinn). His most recent book is the best-seller Appointment in Arezzo: A Friendship with Muriel Spark (Polygon) and he is the editor of the centenary editions of the Collected Novels of Muriel Spark (Polygon). He has been the editor and board member of the Scottish Review of Books since 2004 and has been involved with Emerging Critics since the beginning.