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Berwick Literary Festival Blog

Margaret Skea

Margaret Skea: 3,000 words was my comfort zone

By Dawn Tindle / 22nd October 2016

Margaret Skea gave a brilliant talk today on writing short stories – and how short-form writers need not fear the novel. “Short stories are my first love”, Margaret pronounced at the opening of her talk. I’ve heard this a lot from various authors and it always sounds somewhat confessional, like they’re sharing a dark secret.…

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LJ Ross

Writing tips from LJ Ross

By Dawn Tindle / 22nd October 2016

LJ Ross – or Louise – as we know her, was in Berwick today to talk about the importance of place in writing. She has written four novels – Holy Island, Sycamore Gap, Heavenfield and Angel – that have distinctive North East landscapes as their settings. But how does she build those landscapes into her writing, and what does…

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helen mackinven

Jelly babies from Helen MacKinven

By Dawn Tindle / 21st October 2016

As a book blogger, I attend quite a number of meet the author events. I’ve sat in the front row in a Waterstones basement, in the upper tier of a packed theatre and been squashed into a heaving festival tent to listen to the authors I love. But, I’ve never quite had the experience I…

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What are authors worth?

By Dawn Tindle / 21st October 2016

Alistair McCleery is Director of the Scottish Centre for the Book at Napier University in Edinburgh. He knows his stuff when it comes to the book industry and joined the Berwick Literary Festival to talk about the worth of writers – on a social, cultural and financial level. Getting paid Alistair started his session by…

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Writing short stories with Margaret Skea

By Dawn Tindle / 20th October 2016

Margaret Skea will be at Berwick Literary Festival on Saturday to defend the little guy: the short story. Not only will Margaret be launching her debut short story collection, Dust Blowing and Other Stories, with us, she’ll be talking about the skills needed and the joys of writing short stories. I spoke to her to find…

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Turning trauma into text with Matt Johnson

By Dawn Tindle / 20th October 2016

Matt Johnson is an ex-soldier and Metropolitan Police officer. In 1999, he was discharged from police service due to suffering post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Like many PTSD suffers, Matt was encouraged to visit a counsellor and talk through his experiences. His counsellor also suggested writing down those thoughts as a means of processing the events…

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Writing place with Louise Ross

By Dawn Tindle / 6th October 2016

You may know Louise as LJ Ross, the bestselling author of the DCI Ryan series of crime novels. Each of her novels have a distinct sense of place, and she’ll be visiting Berwick Literary Festival to talk about how writers can transport scenery into storyline. The Northumberland landscape has been a constant source of inspiration…

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Interview with Liz Loutfi

By Dawn Tindle / 5th October 2016

Liz Loutfi will be one of the first speakers on the bill at this year’s Berwick Literary Festival, and she will be opening with an intriguing session on the “unexpected Gothic”. She spoke to me about what she will be talking about, and why Gothic has captured the imaginations of readers and writers for centuries.…

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Inside the mind of Raoul Moat

By Dawn Tindle / 3rd October 2016

In the summer of 2010, a week-long manhunt took the nation by storm. Raoul Moat, a 37-year-old man from Newcastle, was released from Durham Prison and within two days had shot three people with a sawn-off shot gun. His ex-girlfriend Samantha Stobbart was hospitalised, her partner Chris Brown was killed, and police officer David Rathband…

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It would be a crime to miss Berwick Literary Festival

By Dawn Tindle / 24th September 2016

If you’re a fan of crime fiction, or even write a bit of it yourself, then Berwick Literary Festival is the place to be this October. The festival programme has five fantastic sessions where you can learn more about the art of crime writing: · Shelley Day Gerry Foley will be interviewing Shelley about her critically…

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