Stewart Conn was born in Glasgow in 1936 and moved to Kilmarnock, Ayrshire in 1942 where his family had roots close by at Craigie Hill. Stewart's immediate family moved to Kilmarnock when his father, the Rev. Dr John Conn, was appointed minister of St Marnock's Church. Stewart attended Kilmarnock Academy and his school record is still preserved there. He took several Highers and he was involved in producing the school magazine, Goldberry.
He attended Glasgow University and after studying for his degree he did National Service in the Royal Air Force. He then worked for BBC Radio and was appointed Senior Drama Producer for BBC Radio Scotland in 1977. His first poetry collection - Thunder in the Air - was published in 1967 and he has continued to publish collections ever since - his most recent publication being Distances : an evocation of people and places.
He used his Ayrshire experience for his early works and it also features in his 1995 collection - In the Blood. He is also a distinguished playwright, with The Burning first performed in 1971 and Herman (1981).
On 30 May 2002 he was honoured as the first Edinburgh Makar (poet laureate of Edinburgh) a post he will hold for 3 years. This honour is a recognition of the quality of Stewart's work over the years and the fact that he is regarded as a significant contemporary Scottish voice. The appointment also recognises his long association with Edinburgh which has been his home for 25 years.