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Sunday, 14 June 2009

Post CrimeFest

I’ve been busy editing recently, but I’m delighted to say that Washington Shadow, the second in the Peter Cotton series has now gone off to the copy editor. It is due out on November 5th this year. More information about this and the Peter Cotton series will be gradually added to the website over the next few weeks, so keep a look out for the new additions.

I got back from CrimeFest four weeks ago now. It was the first time I had taken part in one of these events and I found it very interesting. The Fest part means that there was a mix of writers, agents, editors, reviewers, bloggers and keen readers.

It was constantly repeated to me while I was there that crime writers (unlike romantic novelists, apparently, though I am in no position to corroborate this) are a very friendly lot, and from my experience in Bristol, this is certainly true.

A number of the writers I met (including some on my panels) had been initially surprised to be included in a festival for crime writers. But CrimeFest covers a wide variety of authors and books and, for me, this is definitely one of its strengths and attractions.

I met so many people over the weekend that it’s difficult to mention everyone here. In addition to my co-panellists, some of those I enjoyed speaking to included Dave Headley of Goldsboro Books, CrimeFest organiser Adrian Muller, Bill and Toby Gottfried from the US, Amanda Brown, Maxine (aka Petrona) Clarke and Karen Meek(Eurocrime); authors Suzette Hill, Chris Ewan, Donna Moore (who has just started a new blog featuring Scottish authors) and Ewan from Glasgow, and - what I was especially pleased about - a lot of keen and curious readers, including Sarah Williams, who was on the same table at the Gala Dinner.

On Friday evening I had dinner at a nearby restaurant called the Lido with Alison Bruce, Steven Hague, Eve Seymore and their agent Broo Doherty, Jane Grigson and Ruth Dudley Ellis. Good Mediterranean food and very enjoyable company.

I was speaking on two panels. The first, on Friday afternoon, was called SUSPICION: BUILDING THE SUSPENSE. Also on the panel were Ann Cleeves, Brian McGilloway and Yrsa Sigurdardottir. Our moderator was Margaret Murphy, who recently took over as chair of the Crime Writers Association.

The second, on Sunday morning, was the Debut Authors panel: PICK-UP ON SOUTH STREET moderated by Peter Guttridge. The other speakers on this panel were Alison Bruce, Steven Hague, M.R. Hall, Jenni Mills and Matt Hilton.

In each case we were fortunate to have an excellent moderator who had prepared well and really contributed to making the sessions relaxed, lively and interesting.

Thanks to everyone on these panels for making this so enjoyable. It was good to meet you all.


Phillipa said...

Hello Aly. Just dropping by to say a *very* friendly hello to you. I'm in the Romantic Novelists Association and Broo is my agent. :)

Aly Monroe said...

Hello Phillipa,
I've just seen your message. How nice to hear from you. I had a lovely chat to Broo at CrimeFest. Say hi to her from me.