Dr Janina Ramirez is the presenter of the BBC's Raiders of the Lost Past, a Sunday Times best-selling author of ‘Femina’, cultural historian, broadcaster, and Oxford academic. She has published widely on medieval art and literature, and has taught and researched across a broad chronological sweep, covering everything from the sculptures of antiquity to post-modern architecture.
Ann Cleeves, OBE, is a British crime writer. Her books bring to life the characters of Vera Stanhope, Jimmy Perez, and Matthew Venn, all which have been adapted into TV shows. In 2006 she won the CWADiamond Dagger award for her novel Raven Black, the first novel in the Jimmy Perez series. She has written 35 books and sold over 8 million copies worldwide. Her latest Vera novel is ‘The Rising Tide’, set in Northumberland where Ann lives.
Mim Skinner is a writer and social entrepreneur living in County Durham. She is the co-founder of REfUSE, an organisation which intercepts and redistributes food that would go to landfill. Her debut non-fiction book Jailbirds won her a place on The Elle List’s 2019’s ‘game changers of now’.
LJ Ross is an international bestselling author of atmospheric crime and mystery thrillers, which have sold over 7 million copies worldwide. Her bestselling DCI Ryan series of Northumbrian murder mysteries is the second bestselling series of all time on Amazon. She was born and bred in the region, where she continues to live with her husband and young children. LJ Ross is a longstanding supporter of numerous local charities, as well as running her own philanthropic initiatives, including the new Northern Film Prize in association with Alnwick Storyfest.
Caro Giles is a writer based in Northumberland. Her words are inspired by her local landscape, the wide empty beaches and the Cheviot Hills. Her writing has appeared in journals, press and periodicals and she was named BBC Countryfile magazine’s New Nature Writer of the Year in 2021. Her new book, Twelve Moons, is out January 2023
Michael Booth is the award-winning, best-selling author of seven works of non-fiction, as well as a journalist, broadcaster and speaker. He writes predominantly about travel, food, France, Japan, East Asia and the Nordic region. He is a correspondent for Monocle magazine and contributing editor of Condé Nast Traveller.
Emma Flint was born and grew up in Newcastle upon Tyne. Since childhood, she has been drawn to true-crime stories, developing an encyclopaedic knowledge of real-life murder cases from the early 20th century. Her first novel, ‘Little Death’s, was longlisted for the Women’s Prize for Fiction, for the Desmond Elliott Prize, for the CrimeWriters’ Association Gold Dagger Award, and for The Guardian’s Not the Booker Prize. ‘Other Women’ is her second novel, published Feb 23rd.
Writing as Cass Green, Caroline's debut adult novel The Woman Next Door was a Number 1 e-book bestseller and her second, In A Cottage, In A Wood was a Sunday Times top ten and USA Today bestseller. Sleep Tight, the first of three genre-bending police procedurals, was published by HarperCollins in 2021, followed by The Whisper House, in July 2022.
Jackee Holder is a coach, columnist, creativity expert, creator of The Inner & Outer Nature Self-Discovery card deck which contains 49 nature and tree-inspired journaling questions to amplify your journal writing practice, author of Soul Purpose’, ‘Be Your Own Best Life Coach’, ‘49 Ways to Write Yourself Well’
Michael Heppell is author of 8 Sunday Times bestselling self-help books. Through his events and coaching Michael has worked with everyone from Category B Prisoners to Business Leaders; from Premiership Footballers to TV Personalities. ‘The best, most life changing hour and half of my life.’ Davina McCall. Michael lives near Hexham.
Jesse Greengrass is a writer who lives in Berwick. Her second novel, The High House, was published in April 2021. It follows an unconventional family as they survive a climate apocalypse in a house prepared by the mother, a climate scientist and activist, who knows the floods are coming but does not survive them. It was shortlisted for the 2021 Costa Novel Award and the RSL Encore Award.
Clare MacCumhaill and Rachael Wiseman are the authors of Radio 4’s Book of the Week ‘Metaphysical Animals: How Four Women Brought Philosophy Back to Life’. Lauded by everyone from the New Yorker to the Sunday Times, North East authors Cumhaill and Wiseman live in Newcastle and are co-directors of Women in Parenthesis, a project that encourages new kinds of philosophical thinking and practice.
Tricia Cresswell is a retired public health doctor, now living in Alnwick. The Midwife is her first novel and won the Mslexia debut novel award. The themes in the novel reflect her commitment to women's rights and are only too relevant today.
Michael Chaplin is a playwright, television and non-fiction writer, as well as a former producer and executive at ITV and the BBC. His writing credits include the highly successful television series Grafters and Monarch of the Glen, as well as nearly 100 plays for the theatre and BBC Radio 4.
Caroline Spencer is dog behavourist based in Northumberland and co-author of ‘Why does my dog do that?’ and co-author of ‘Parenting Your New Puppy.’ Caroline wrote these books in the hope she can reach more people and inspire and give them confidence, to mend those issues with their dogs they thought were impossible to sort.
Chloe’s debut novel Fish Boy was published by Faber & Faber in 2017 to critical acclaim; it was nominated for the Carnegie Medal, longlisted for the UKLA and shortlisted for the Branford Boase children’s debut of the year. Her third novel, Fire Girl Forest Boy, was published in June 2019 by Faber, and won the Gandys Children’s Travel Book of the Year. Chloe Daykin lives in Northumberland with her family.
Lisette Auton is a Disabled writer, activist, and creative practitioner based in Darlington in North-East England. Her debut middle grade novel The Secret of Haven Point is out now from Puffin. Lisette's new book The Stickleback Catchers will be published in February 2023 and available at the festival
Lucy Farfort is an Illustrator and Author of dual Caribbean-English heritage, based in Newcastle Upon Tyne. Her work is a mixture of traditional watercolour painting and digital art. After winning first prize in illustration for Faber Children’s inaugural FAB Prize competition, Lucy has gone onto work with a number of publishers and clients such as Little Tiger Press, Knight's Of, Scholastic and BBC Bitesize.
Most recently Lucy has debuted as an Author with her picture book 'In Our Hands’ from Tate Publishing, and her short story 'Light Bearer', that published in the ‘Faber Book of Bedtime Stories’.
Ross Welford is an award-winning author of eight page-turning novels all set in the North-East including Time Travelling with a Hamster and The 1000 Year Old Boy.
Ross will be in Alnwick to introduce his latest book The Monkey Who Fell From the Future, talk about his inspirations and characters as well as putting his own magical spin on storytelling. Fun and magic tricks guaranteed! 9+
Ross Welford was a journalist and television producer before becoming a full-time writer. He lives in London with his wife, children, a border collie, and several tropical fish
Emma Whitehall is an author, bookseller and introvert from the North East of England. Her YA debut Clockwork Magpies was longlisted for the Times/Chicken House Children’s Fiction Competition, and was published with Northodox Press in February 2022. Clockwork Magpies was an instant bestseller at the bound, Whitley Bay; the indie bookshop where Emma spends most of her time squealing about new YA releases and surviving on hot chocolates. You can find Emma on Instagram @pensandpizza!
RT HON Baroness Joyce Quin is an academic and politician who served as a Government minister from 1997 to 2001 and was brought up in Tyneside. She was appointed to the House of Lords in 2006. Moira Kilkenny worked in Education for more than thirty years and now chairs the Warkworth History Society.
Thomas Bentley is an assistant director who worked on Dungeons and Dragons: Honor Among Thieves which was filmed in Alnwick in (2021).
In the ten years that Thomas has worked in the industry he has worked his way from runner to a 1st assistant director on some of the largest film franchises in the world. His credits include: Rogue One A Star Wars Story (2016), Wonder Woman (2017 & 2020), Mission Impossible 6 Fallout (2018), and the last Bond movie No Time to Die (2021).
Alnwick Story Fest
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