Arran author pens epic Moby Dick adaptation

Author Marty Ross.

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Book review

An Arran author has penned an epic dramatic adaptation of the famous Moby Dick novel.

Released by Audible this week, the audio book and audio drama wing of Amazon, the new book is a full cast dramatisation of one of the great tales of the sea.

The adaptation of Herman Melville’s Moby Dick stars acclaimed actor David Morrisey (State Of Play, The Walking Dead) as Captain Ahab.

It has been dramatised by author Marty Ross, Whiting Bay, who is well known on the island for his storytelling performances, both in pre-lockdown live shows, and as resident storyteller on ArranSound radio.

He has also written drama extensively for BBC Radio, Big Finish (producers of Doctor Who and Dark Shadows audio) and most recently for Audible, for which he has written epic dramatisations of Treasure Island, The Arabian Nights and The Three Musketeers, as well as originals such as Romeo and Jude and Gothic chiller The Darkwater Bride.

He found living on Arran useful when it came to transforming Herman Melville’s novel of the great white whale into a riveting drama.

He said: ‘Every morning I would walk and clamber the rocks of Whiting Bay, soaking up the salt sea air, searching out strange and monstrous shapes among the rocks, and looking across the waves – the best preparation, short of actually being on a 19th century whaling ship, for going to my desk and imagining the adventures of the crew of
the Pequod in the remotest seas of the world.’

Marty is currently finishing off another publication for Audible, with a musical score by the London Symphony Orchestra.

He is also writing the pilot episode for a crime series set on the west coast of Scotland.

But telling stories, whether live or on the radio, to his community on Arran is just as important.

‘It’s rewarding, obviously, doing these epics for Audible with big name actors, but in
my show for ArranSound I can get back to the basics of good storytelling, performing my own work in a no-frills way that allows me to tell exactly the stories I want to tell in exactly the way I want to tell them,’ he added.

Although his workload means Marty taking a brief hiatus from his regular Sunday and Thursday nights on ArranSound, he will be returning shortly.

Meanwhile all previous shows featuring Marty performing tales of magic and mystery largely set on Arran are freely available on the Magic Island Storytelling Theatre podcast on Spotify, Apple and Google.

Moby Dick is available free to all Audible subscribers.

The cover of the new Moby Dick adaptation.