Photograph by John Mackie
Iona Lee is a poet and writer of non-fiction, an artist, music-maker, storyteller and spoken-word performer from Edinburgh. She has been a prominent member of Scotland's live poetry scene for ten years, appearing on radio (The Verb, The Digital Human) and television (The Big Scottish Book Club), and has performed in venues and on festival stages all over the UK and Europe (Glastonbury, The Albert Hall, Transpoesie, the Edinburgh International Book Festival.)
Iona has had poems accepted by the likes of MAGMA, Gutter Magazine, 404 ink, Tangerine Press, the Morning Star, and the Scotsman. She has a poem in Hatchett publishing's anthology
Poems for A Green and Blue Planet, and has had essays and articles published in Bella Caledonia, the Skinny and a recent anthology of contemporary writings on witchcraft - The Modern Craft.
Iona is the front woman of the poetry-psyche ensemble Acolyte, who's single, The Black Cat, was BBC Radio Scotland's single of the week in 2021. In 2023, Acolyte received support from Help Musicians UK. Alongside DJ and sound healer Nikki Kent, Iona organises and hosts Wax Lyrical, an evening of spontaneous poetic and musical collaboration, appearing at the likes of Hidden Door Festival and
the Kelburn Garden Party.
Iona has a BA in illustration from the Glasgow School of Art and a first class MFA in Art & Philosophy from DJCAD. Her pamphlet (Polygon, 2018) was shortlisted for a Saltire Award, and in 2022 her upcoming debut collection, Anamnesis, was shortlisted for the Edwin Morgan Poetry Award. In 2022, Iona was included in Young Women Scotland's 30 Under 30 list.
. Scottish Slam Champion, 2016
. Saboteur Award, best poetry pamphlet, 2019 - shortlisted
. Saltire Award, best poetry pamphlet, 2019 - shortlisted
. Ignite Fellowship, 2020 - shortlisted
. Edwin Morgan Poetry Award, 2022 - shortlisted
. The John Byrne Award, August 2022