View tag: Chipping Norton Literary Festival

Paula Hawkins and Renee Knight at ChipLitFest

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Friday 8th May 2015

This year’s ChipLitFest was a triumph from start to finish – a satisfying mix of world famous writers who’ve sold millions of books (yes, I’m talking about Lee Child and Mark Billingham) and debut novelists at the start of their careers. Two new writers I was keen to learn more about were Paula Hawkins and Renee Knight, who along with Jason Hewitt appeared at an event called New Voices. Paula Hawkins ...keep reading

Julie Cohen on the art of the rewrite

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Tuesday 28th April 2015

Julie Cohen is a one-woman dynamo. She’s not only had 20 books published, both under her own name and pseudonyms, but they’ve sold nearly a million copies and been translated into 15 languages. Dear Thing, her 2014 novel, was a Richard and Judy Book Club choice and her latest, Where Love Lies, is now out in paperback. With a track record like that, Julie clearly knows what she’s talking about so I ...keep reading

Lee Child at ChipLitFest 2015

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Sunday 26th April 2015

The Saturday shoppers fell silent as a tall, lean man with closely cropped hair and shades walked through the crowded bookshop and into the morning sunshine. He was instantly surrounded by an adoring crowd of fans, a bit like a literary Mick Jagger. “Was that Lee Child?” I asked the woman next to me. She nodded dreamily. “Yes. He’s my husband’s favourite author but we’re too nervous to go and ...keep reading

Three cheers for ChipLitFest

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Tuesday 8th July 2014

The Chipping Norton Literary Festival is hands-down my favourite lit fest of the year. It’s only been running for three years but it’s the friendliest, most innovative, most inspiring celebration of books that I’ve come across. I ran a freelance journalism workshop the first year and was so hooked by the festival’s buzzing atmosphere that I’ve been back every year since. I’ve heard everyone from Nicci French (pictured), Mark Billingham ...keep reading

Friday book review – Thursday’s Children by Nicci French

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Friday 13th June 2014

I’ve been hooked on Nicci French’s Frieda Klein novels since the first one was hot off the press back in 2011. Why? Because when it comes to crime fiction, Frieda stands out from the crowd. She’s a complex loner who has a tricky relationship with her family, a tricky relationship with her lover, a tricky relationship with the police and well, a tricky relationship with virtually everyone. She also has a ...keep reading

ChipLitFest part 3 – India Knight and Gill Hornby

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Wednesday 30th April 2014

I’ve read India Knight’s Mutton and Gill Hornby’s The Hive and expected their event at the Chipping Norton Literary Festival to be all about their novels. How wrong could I be? Chaired by writer Jane Wenham-Jones, the hour-long session was far more entertaining than that. To sum it up, it was all about bees, Botox and bras. The straight-talking conversation began with bees because they helped to inspire Gill Hornby’s ...keep reading

ChipLitFest part 2 – Pitch the agent

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Tuesday 29th April 2014

Carole Blake is the doyenne of literary agents. She has worked in publishing for 50 years, started her own literary agency in 1977 (now Blake Friedmann) and has a star-studded list of clients that includes the likes of Peter James, Barbara Erskine and Sheila O’Flanagan. She’s also the author of From Pitch to Publication: Everything You Need to Know to Get Your Novel Published, a must-read for writers. Carole is ...keep reading

ChipLitFest part 1 – Nicci French

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Monday 28th April 2014

I’m so hooked on Nicci French’s addictive Frieda Klein series that the instant I realised that the fourth instalment was out I hotfooted it down to my local bookshop to buy it. There was no question of waiting for the paperback – I had to read Thursday’s Children immediately (review to follow). I had exactly the same response when I spotted that husband and wife writing duo Sean French and Nicci ...keep reading

Peter Guttridge’s Crime Writing Masterclass

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Wednesday 5th June 2013

My desk is a complete tip so I’m trying to have a sort-out. So far I’ve uncovered stuff that’s been hidden under coffee-stained papers and books for years. Lost treasures include 20 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows CDs, a dog-eared copy of Jilly Cooper’s Polo and a fountain pen I was given during the Prince and Princess of Wales’s Middle East tour of 1986. I’ve also found a notebook I ...keep reading

Crime fiction is like “sausage and mash.” Really?

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Tuesday 23rd April 2013

The first crime novel I ever read was Murder at the Vicarage by Agatha Christie. From then on I stoically worked my way through all her Miss Marple stories, from The Body in the Library to the 4.50 from Paddington. Me and my mum were such fans that we used to go and see drama adaptations of Christie novels at the Playhouse in Bournemouth on Saturday afternoons. But after a ...keep reading