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Shrewsbury Festival of Literature

Shrewsbury Festival of Literature


International authors, award-winning poets and leading writers are all part of the line-up of the third annual Shrewsbury Festival of Literature taking place from November 23 to 25.

They will descend on venues across Shrewsbury to perform, give talks and lead workshops and other literary happenings.

Authors range from the acclaimed novelist Manda Scott, the celebrated food writer Elisabeth Luard and the ‘natural navigator’ Tristan Gooley to international mental health campaigner Rachel Kelly, fiction writer Kate Mascarenhas and poet Matthew Francis.

The Shropshire-based nature writer, Guardian country diarist, poet and broadcaster Paul Evans (Sat Nov 24 & Sun Nov 25) is also part of the line-up.

And the festival’s popular Poetry Slam – a fast-pace, head-to-head, live poetry competition – is back, led by the performance poets and comedians Dave Pitt and Emma Purshouse (Sat Nov 24).

Budding writers can learn how to pen their own ‘bestseller in a writing workshop (Sun Nov 25) and there will even be a ‘Human Library’ where the books literally tell their own story (Sat Nov 24).

Festival highlights include Tristan Gooley (Fri Nov 23), author of international award-winning bestsellers, such as The Natural Navigator and How To Read Water, who will explain how it’s possible to read nature by gauging direction from stars and plants, forecast weather from woodland sounds and predict the behaviour of animals.

Rachel Kelly (Sat Nov 24), author of the international best-seller Walking on Sunshine: 52 Small Steps to Happiness, will talk about her experience of depression and recovery and the strategies that can help people manage the pressures of everyday life.

Best-selling novelist, columnist and screen writer Manda Scott, who lives in South Shropshire, is author of both the globally successful Boudica and Rome series. She will lead the audience into a web of murder, mystery and espionage with her latest thriller A Treachery of Spies (Sun Nov 25).

Food and travel writer Elisabeth Luard will share her culinary adventures from around the world (Sun Nov 25).

Poet Matthew Francis will read from his acclaimed re-telling of the ancient Welsh legend The Mabinogi, a series of connected fantastical stories which stretch back into the annals of Welsh storytelling tradition (Sun Nov 25).

“The festival will celebrate fiction, poetry, storytelling and non-fiction with writers taking us through the inspiration and fascinating stories behind their works,” said Festival Chairperson Susan Caroline.

The Human Library will be at Shrewsbury Library on November 24, from 10am to 12 noon. The ‘books’ will be people with special experiences to share. It is part of an international movement that aims to challenge social stereotypes, prejudices and stigmas that can lead to discrimination and exclusion.

Support SFL by becoming a year-long or weekend 'Friend' of the Festival for ticket discounts, priority booking, bookstall discounts and an invitation to the festival launch. Year-long friends also get a 10% discount all year at independent book shop Pengwern Books.

For information about all the festival events visit www.shrewsburylitfest.co.uk. Tickets are available online or from Pengwern Books, Fish Street, Shrewsbury.


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