KERRY Hudson is a woman with a lot to say.

When I meet the author in a coffee shop on Glasgow's south side we spend most of our allotted interview time verbally tripping over one another as we swap stories about our many shared experiences.

We both spent formative years in Coatbridge and Airdrie, lived overseas and have now made Glasgow our home; we're both writers and we both work at the University of Glasgow.

And we also now have something else in common - for Hudson is meeting me to talk about her latest venture as The Herald's newest columnist.

"Once we got back to Scotland I wanted to write about Glasgow and the community," she said. "There's so much interesting and lovely stuff, I'm so in love with Glasgow.

"I feel really lucky The Herald has given me a space to write about stuff that's really interesting to me or I'm curious about, stuff that I think is worth celebrating in Scotland.

"I think if I'm having strong emotional reactions to it then I hope our readers will too."

Hudson was propelled into the public consciousness in 2019 by the success of her memoir Lowborn, a searching chronicle of a difficult childhood marked by poverty and parental mental ill health.

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This was, though, the 42-year-old's second book, the first being the lavishly titled Tony Hogan Bought Me An Ice-Cream Float Before He Stole My Ma, which is in part a fictionalised account of her family story.

A third work is imminent, a study of Hudson's recent experiences: of setting off on a round-the-world-trip that began and ended in Prague when she became pregnant, of having a baby in lockdown in a foreign country, and of being diagnosed with a near-fatal autoimmune condition.

Certainly Hudson has a lot to say, not least thanks to a life rich in material. In her Herald column, she plans to write about her personal experiences but placed in a political context, feminism, health and chronic illness.

Since having her son – now aged two and "a little dollop of sunshine, hilarious and fabulous and the best" – Hudson also writes keenly about motherhood.

She's determined to bring a slice of positivity to readers and highlight Glasgow's sense of community, something she's found joy in since returning to the city.

The little things have made her feel at home and part of a newfound family – the man who pressed a £2 coin into her little boy's hand "for an ice cream" or the chap at Mount Florida train station who keeps a box of crisps to give as treats to young passengers.

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She said: "I write a lot now about trying to build a sense of community and trying to make things more hopeful because I feel like it's easy to think that everything's such a binfire.

"I often say my columns are basically what I needed at a time I was going through something difficult and they are the column equivalent of a whisky or a cup of tea – depending on your poison – and a hug.

"If last year taught me anything it was that finding the hopeful and the positive in difficulties is what helps you to fight against the stuff that you're angry about.

"But I really feel that you have to have a belief that there's good people out there doing good things and that people at heart are good."

Hudson gives me a run down of her plan for her inaugural Herald column, which starts next Wednesday, January 25, and some future ideas – but I won't give any spoilers here.

Glasgow is sure to feature heavily, however, and nothing is off limits.

She added: "I just try to show up and be really honest and try to keep the human story at the heart of things.

"I'm not a trained journalist and so I'm really aware that what I'm offering is a very personal, very human perspective on stories and I really feel like that has a place alongside trained journalists who do an amazing, very specialised job."

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Coming from a working class background and a childhood marked by poverty, Hudson is pleased at the diversity of voices now represented in the media and an increasing awareness in the media that varied perspectives are vital.

There is, however, still work to be done.

Hudson said: "Even in the 10 years I've been a published author I've seen things change and a willingness to try and promote inclusivity and try to have more voices, whether that's working class voices or ethnic minority voices.

"I think a willingness and an awareness is not the same as systemic change but I'm a naturally hopeful person and I believe there's more space for us now that our stories are more and more seen as valuable."

It's 25 years since Hudson last lived in Glasgow but it had the "absolute comfort" of feeling and tasting like home as soon as she returned and had a fish supper and Irn Bru to settle in.

She is delighted to have her little boy "grow up with a Weegie accent".

Hudson said: "Prague is quite a restrained place. Even in the playgrounds you don't hear a raised voice, it's a very sedate culture.

"On our second day in Glasgow someone was playing a 90s banger out of their car window and we were both having a little dance and my husband just looked at me and said, 'You make a lot more sense in Glasgow.'

"It feels absolutely right to be here and I feel so honoured to be part of The Herald, which is such an integral part of the city."

She added: "You go on a bus across the city and you know everybody on that bus by the time you get to the other side of the city - what a glorious thing.

"It's really lovely to live in a city that's so open and so kind and it's by no means perfect but I've lived literally all over the world and when they say People Make Glasgow that's really, really true."