This article about Joan McAlpine appeared in the The Sunday Herald's media section in September 2000
WHEN Joan McAlpine worked in the wood-panelled features room of The Scotsman she relished a good-going political barney. The working class lass from Gourock was a feisty breath of fresh air among the New Town pipesmokers and cardigans. She penned acutely observed pieces about people-power in Pollok and social inclusion before Wendy Alexander even jumped on the bandwagon. She had guarded admiration for Tommy Sheridan and his fight against the inquitous poll tax and she ended up writing the Scottish Socialist Party's leader biography long before he became the sun-tanned television star of the new parliament.