Programme

The Northern Literary Festival

Greenbank Building, Preston, Lancashire, PR1 2HE

15th – 17th Jaunary 2021

We’re going virtual!

Subscribe to our YouTube channel here and register for our LIVE events here.

NYALitFest 15th January 2021

6 pm – 7 pm Voices (Patrice Lawrence, El Norry, Leila Rasheed & Bali Rai. Chaired by Jake Hope).

7 pm – 8 pm How to get Published. Join agent Sandra Sawicka and authors Rose Edwards and Amy McCaw as the discuss how to get published.

LIVE 7:30 pm – 8:30 pm Women at War. Join award winning authors Sally Nicholls and Eve Ainsworth as they discuss the role of young women during First World War, and how it affected the lives of those around them. Chaired by Charlie Sheppard.

9 pm – Student Showcase Writing with UCLan Authors. Join UCLan authors Ruth Estevez, Sam Pope, and Susan Brownrigg for writing tips. They will be chatting to Publishing MA student, Stephen, about perennial writing issues such as character development, getting ideas and barriers to novel-writing.

10 pm – Student Showcase A Different Route to Publication. Interested in a career with books? Current MA student, Steph, will be talking to three UCLan authors about their experience working with masters students to get their novels published. Featuring Susan Brownrigg (Gracie Fairshaw and the Mysterious Guest), Sam Pope (The Haunting of Lindy Pennyworth) and Ruth Estevez (The Monster Belt).

NYALitFest 16th January 2021

10 am – 10:30 am Anna Mainwaring – The Writer’s Voice. Agents and publishers often say that what they are looking for in submissions is a unique voice. But what does that mean? In this workshop, you will explore what is meant by the writer’s voice, and aim to find your own.

10:30 am – 11 am Vanessa Jones. Join author and musical theatre actress, Vanessa as she introduces you to her debut novel, SING Like No One’s Listening! Inspired by her time on the stage, Vanessa paints a scene of what it’s really like to learn at a British musical theatre school. Followed by an intimate interactive workshop. You will be able to view this event here on the 16th January 2021.

LIVE 11 am – 12 pm Toxic Talk Join Andy Robb, Juno Dawson, Matt Killeen,  and Samuel Pollen as they discuss the effects of toxic thinking and talking.

12 pm – 1 pm Get into Writing with Chicken House (Barry Cunningham, Kesia Lupo & Amy Bond). Calling all aspiring writers! Join Chicken House publisher Barry Cunningham – known for discovering JK Rowling – editor and YA author of We Are Blood and Thunder Kesia Lupo, and Amy Bond, author of Morgana Mage in the Robotic Age for an hour of writing tips. Learn how to get your manuscript in tip-top shape, what publishers and editors are really looking for, and how to enter the Times/Chicken House Children’s Fiction Competition for unpublished writers. See you there!

LIVE 1 pm – 2 pm What Love Is, and What Love Isn’t (Holly Bourne in Conversation with Lisa Williamson)

2 pm – 2:45 pm – Myths, Magic & Legends Join Mel Salisbury, Rose Edwards, Bex Hogan, and Kesia Lupo as they discuss how mythology, magic and legends have influenced their writing.

3 pm – 4 pm Defying Expectations Join Sue Cheung, Mel Darbon, Yaba Badoe & Darren Charlton. In this unique panel we have 4 authors with 4 very different books; all with the common theme of Defying Expectations.

4.30 pm – 5.30 pm Speak Up! Join George Lester, Louisa Reid, Sharon Dogar & Laura Coryton as they discuss the importance of Speaking Up, and finding your own voice.

LIVE 6 pm – 7 pm Last One To Die. Join us for the virtual launch of LAST ONE TO DIE, Cynthia Murphy’s debut YA horror-thriller with a supernatural twist, out in January. Cynthia will be in conversation with Amy McCaw, author of Mina and the Undead (out in April 2021). They will be chatting all about the wonders of Point Horror and the inspiration behind LAST ONE TO DIE.

30 audience members will be entered into a draw to win an exclusive LAST ONE TO DIE enamel badge. 10 audience members will be entered into a draw to win a proof of Mina and the Undead by Amy McCaw.

LIVE 7:30 pm – 8:30 pm Love, Life and Everything In Between. Join us to celebrate the publication of C.G. Moore’s second novel, Gut Feelings.

At school,
I learned that words,
More than weapons,
Could destroy bodies,
Could break hearts.
More than fists or fury. 

This is the story of Chris, what happened to him at age eleven and how that would change the rest of his life. A life-affirming and powerful coming of age verse novel that shines a light on chronic illness, who we are and how we live. 

C.G. Moore will be in conversation with bestselling author Alice Oseman, discussing all things to do with love, life and being a teen.

8:30 pm CLOSE


KIDSLitFest 2020

Workshops

10 am – 10:30 am Dan Walker – How do stories work?  Author of The Light Hunters will talk you through creating your own story with your friends and family. (8+)

11 am – 11:30 am Trailblazers! Join Katherine Woodfine and Susan Brownrigg as they talk about creating trailblazing characters.

11:30 – 12 pm The Book of Secrets. Philip Caveney will be introducing you to Archimaldo, a medieval troubadour who could do with some help creating his next jingle! Join us on the 17th of January if you have what it takes to work in a medieval advertising agency! Make sure you have pen and paper to hand.

1 pm – 1:30 pm Map Making with Vashti Hardy. Create your own fantasy map with bestselling author of Brightstorm and Wildspark. (8+)

1:30 pm – 2 pm Liz Flanagan – Dragon Daughter. Join Liz Flanagan, the award-winning author of Dragon Daughter, for a magical creatures masterclass! Make sure you have paper and pencils at the ready! (8+)

2 pm – 2:45 pm Adventure Awaits! Join Thomas Taylor, Ross MacKenzie & Vashti Hardy as they take you on a magical adventure of fantastical storytelling!

3 pm – 3:30 pm Punny Books. Join award-winning author Guy Bass for a full-throttle hour of stand-up, readings, poems, pictures and, most importantly, puns. Expect nothing but nonsense as Guy explores his childhood aspirations and inspirations and reads from his latest punny book, Anna Gain and the Same Sixty Seconds.

3:30 – 4:15 pm Mystery-solving, code-cracking and daring-detectives! Join three brilliant authors of young crime fiction – Annabelle Sami, Anne Miller and Serena Patel – to hear about the whip-smart female detectives they have each created and the perilous but often funny mysteries they solve. There’s ‘Agent Zaiba’, a go-getting British Pakistani and detective mega-fan who is always on the watch for a crime to solve; ‘Mickey’, an inquisitive puzzle-solving genius who is recruited by a Top Secret spy ring run by a band of eccentric animals; and ‘Anisha’ who accidentally becomes a detective the day she discovers a secret ransom note saying Aunty Bindi’s groom has been kidnapped and will only be released if the wedding is called off!

Learn secret tips for writing your own page-turning crime stories. What’s gone wrong? Who are the suspects? And what are your clues?

4:30 pm – 5 pm Mermaid School. Dive in with author and illustrator duo Lucy Courtenay and Sheena Dempsey as they talk all things mermaids and underwater fun! (7+)

5pm CLOSE


PAST EVENTS

Workshops

10am – 11.30am Creative Writing Workshop (Melvin Burgess & Lucy Christopher) Harrington Building, 1st Floor.

12pm – 1.30pm – Ask the Agents (Chloe Seager, Louise Lamont & Sandra Sawicka) Greenbank Lecture Theatre.

Panels/Signings

10.15am – 10.45am: YA Thrillers (Chaired by Caroline Carpenter – Will Hill & M.A. Bennett) Greenbank Lecture Theatre.

11am – 11.45am: Feminist Fantasy Panel (Melinda Salisbury, Samantha Shannon, Laure Eve & Rose Edwards) Harrington Lecture Theatre.

11.45am – 1pm: Author Signings/Stalls/UCLan Publishing Course Tours

Signing: M.A. Bennett, Will Hill, Lucy Christopher, Melinda Salisbury, Samantha Shannon, Laure Eve & Rose Edwards

1pm– 1.45pm: Inclusiveness in YA Panel (Chaired by Aimée Felone – Non Pratt, A.J. Hartley, Bali Rai & Mel Darbon) Harrington Lecture Theatre.

1.45pm – 2.30pm: Author Signings/Stalls/UCLan Publishing Course Tours

Signing: Chloe Seager, Non Pratt, A.J. Hartley, Bali Rai & Mel Darbon

2.30pm – 3.15pm: Shame-Less Panel (Katherine Webber, Melvin Burgess, Laura Steven, Tamsin Winter) Harrington Lecture Theatre.

3.15pm – 4pm: Signing/Stalls

Signing: Katherine Webber, Melvin Burgess, Laura Steven, Tamsin Winter & Lisa Williamson & Alexandra Sheppard

4pm – 5pm: Mental Health Panel (Lisa Williamson, Alice Broadway, Sara Barnard, Akemi Dawn Bowman & Alexandra Sheppard) Harrington Lecture Theatre.

5pm – 6pm: Signing

Signing: Lisa Williamson, Alice Broadway, Sara Barnard & Akemi Dawn Bowman

HOW TO FIND US

NYALitFest is held in the Social Space between the Harrington and Greenbank building highlighted on the campus map here.

Free parking is available on campus. The nearest car parks are Greenbank, Harrington, Victoria and Fylde.

If you are coming on foot from the train station, exit from the station’s main entrance, turn right and then left down Corporation Street to Ringway. Cross Ringway at the lights, turn right, then take first left down Corporation Street (shops including Aldi on your left). Straight ahead and follow signs to the University.

If you are travelling on foot from the bus station, the journey is half a mile and the University is a 15-minute walk from Preston bus station. Head towards Lancaster Road until you arrive at the Cenotaph. Turn right downhill on Friargate. Walk through pedestrianised area down to traffic lights at Ringway. Cross Ringway and continue up Friargate. Follow signs to University.

SCHEDULE IS SUBJECT TO CHANGE

Activities & Stalls

Publisher Stalls – Oxford University Press, Faber, David Fickling Books, Macmillan, Walker, Hachette and UCLan Publishing.

YLG – CILIP Carnegie Medal

Face Painting – get a bookish motif by our free face painter.

Bookish jewellery and gift stalls

Book Exchange – book shelves overflowing with past reads you haven’t yet parted with? A common problem for avid readers! Why not bring your old books to our Book Exchange Stall  and swap them for something you haven’t read?

Waterstones – selling books by the authors attending our event. Cash or card accepted.

More to be confirmed

Please be aware that throughout the duration of the event there will be official event photography/filming taking place for marketing and promotional purposes.


Previous Events

The Supernatural & Fantastical in YA

21st July 12pm – 4.30pm

12pm – Doors Open. Get here early to secure a good seat! We’ll have bookish face painting, The Book Exchange and other activities.

1pm – Fantasy Panel. Melinda Salisbury will be chairing a discussion with Sally Green, Taran Matharu and Alexandra Christo. 4 bestselling authors join together to create a YA Fantasy discussion you don’t want to miss!

2pm – Author Signing. Melinda Salisbury, Sally Green, Taran Matharu & Alexandra Christo

3pm – Supernatural Panel. David Owen will be chairing a discussion with A.J Hartley, Melvin Burgess and Marcus Sedgwick. Be prepared to be spooked as these bestselling authors discuss everything we love about the supernatural.

4pm – Author Signing. David Owen, A.J Hartley, Marcus Sedgwick & Melvin Burgess.

Activities & Stalls

Face Painting – get a bookish motif by our free face painter. She’ll be with us until 1pm.

Book Exchange – book shelves overflowing with past reads you haven’t yet parted with? A common problem for avid readers! Why not bring your old books to our Book Exchange Stall  and swap them for something you haven’t read?

Waterstones – selling books by the authors attending our event. Cash or card accepted.

More to be confirmed.

Please be aware that throughout the duration of the event there will be official event photography/filming taking place for marketing and promotional purposes.