Last weekend I went to ChipLitFest 2015, the Chipping Norton Literary Festival, to see some of the wonderful crime writing events they had on.
It was my first visit to this festival, so bright and early (well, nine-thirtyish anyway) I met up with author Helen Giltrow outside the fabulous Jaffé and Neale Bookshop & Café where we grabbed a quick coffee before the start of the events.
First up was Lee Child in conversation with Mark Billingham – two writers at the top of their game. The packed out event in Chipping Norton Theatre passed in a flash as they talked about Lee’s love of Aston Villa, the origins of Reacher and the latest book – PERSONAL – that’s new out in paperback. It also sounds like there’s a new Reacher film based on the book NEVER GO BACK in the pipeline, with production starting in the autumn. It was a great event, with Lee and Mark on great form and plenty of time for audience questions (and for getting books signed afterwards).
After the session there was just time for some more coffee and a slice of cake at the Jaffé and Neale Bookshop & Café – I had the gluten and dairy free Clementine Cake, it was amazing!
Then it was just a short walk to the Town Hall for the Breaking Through panel with Mel Sherratt, Mark Edwards and C.L. Taylor, and moderator, Peter Guttridge. It was great to hear all about Mel, Mark and Cally’s routes to publication, and fantastic to hear that between them they’ve sold over a million copies of their books.
Then it was time for a leisurely lunch at The Chequers, and a quick (or not so quick) drink in the sun on the balcony at the fabulously named bar ‘Bitter & Twisted’.
Then we headed back to the Theatre for S.J. Watson interviewed by Peter Guttridge. It was fascinating hearing about the translation of S.J. Watson’s first book BEFORE I GO TO SLEEP into a film (of the same name) and great to hear an excerpt of his second book SECOND LIFE that’s come out recently. The chapter ended on a real cliff hanger and I’m very intrigued to read the book so I can find out what happens.
As we filed out of the Theatre it was the end of my visit to ChipLitFest 2015.
I had a fantastic day at a wonderful festival – a brilliantly smooth-running event with fabulously friendly people at every festival location. My only regret is that I didn’t stay for the quiz!
I’ll certainly be back in 2016.
Maybe I’ll see you there?
Check out ChipLitFest’s website at http://www.chiplitfest.com where you can sign up for their newsletter, and be sure to follow them on Twitter @ChipLitFest
And big thanks to awesome Aston Photography www.astonphotography.co.uk for letting me use their fabulous pictures of authors Lee Child, Mark Billingham and S.J. Watson taken during the festival.
You can find out more about the fabulous authors mentioned above by following the links below …
C.L. Taylor at her blog here http://cltaylorauthor.com (and I’ll be reviewing her latest book THE LIE next week)
Mark Edwards at http://vossandedwards.com (and I’ll be reviewing his new book FOLLOW YOU HOME when it’s released in June)
S.J. Watson at http://www.sjwatson-books.com (and I’ll be reviewing his new book SECOND LIFE in the near future)