Berwick Literary Festival

The Berwick Literary Festival programme is out

Have you seen this year’s programme? Wow! The 2016 Berwick Literary Festival programme has just been released and what a corker it is.

From Thursday 20 to Sunday 23 October, our little Northumberland town will be packed with authors catering to every taste. Let’s take a look at the highlights.

Budding writers

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We have a whole host of sessions to help those who are looking to put pen to paper. There’s a creative writing workshop, a session on novel versus screen writing, an informative piece about what authors are worth, tips on writing short stories, how to tackle challenging issues in young adult fiction plus advice on how you can get published.

This is invaluable information for any burgeoning writers who don’t quite know where to start. Whether you have an idea that needs developing, an existing piece that requires a little polishing or you just need some insight into how the industry works, these sessions will help you find your way. And, who knows, you could be featuring on a future Berwick Literary Festival programme yourself once you hit the big time. (Remember us when you do, please.)

Fiction fans

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If you’re a lover of fiction (me too), you’ll be spoilt for choice with the fantastic array of creative writers coming to Berwick.

Shelley Day will be talking about her first novel The Confession of Stella Moon. I was lucky enough to attend the launch of this book in Newcastle in July and have just reviewed it. It’s gritty, sharp and intriguing – a perfect page turner for crime fiction fans. Amanda Jennings will also be with us to discuss her thriller, In Her Wake. Just make sure you’re with someone if you’re reading these two on a dark October night.

We have Louise Ross talking about how the Northumberland landscape inspired her DCI Ryan series, Holy Island, Sycamore Gap and Heavenfield, and explaining how scenery can become an intrinsic part of the storyline. Your reading list will be massive after you’re finished here.

Fact finders

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If non-fiction is your thing, we have three superb speakers for you. On Friday night, Alistair Moffat will be taking us through the history of Scotland, providing fascinating insights into our stunning neighbour just across the border.

Saturday afternoon will see Andrew Hankinson talking about Inside the Mind of Raoul Moat. This unique book looks back at the events of July 2010 when Moat went on a killing spree throughout the North East, telling the tale in Moat’s own words. It’s been described as “bold and highly original” by The Guardian and is sure to give you lots of think about after the session.

We also have historian extraordinaire David Starkey joining us on Saturday night to discuss his new book 1216: The Real Magna Carta. Following on from a successful TV series last year, Starkey has brought to life the events surrounding the creation of the document that underpins our democracy. This is sure to be a very interesting debate from a renown scholar and lively orator.

Wow! I’m exhausted already. And, those were just the highlights. There are loads more events in between these, including a dedicated programme just for kids, so you’ll definitely find something to keep you busy during the festival.

I’ll be frantically blogging from most of these events, running across the town trying not to miss any pearls of wisdom from this awesome line up of accomplished writers. I’ll see you there!

View the full programme here.

(Feature photo credit: Dru Dodd Photography)

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