There are a wide range of fascinating Literary Festivals happening this September, and we've selected some of our favourite events. Be sure to check out each festival's full programme though, who knows what other delights you will find!
Chiswick Book Festival | 14th-18th September
An Evening with Jane Austen - 14th September 6pm
The Chiswick Book Festival opens with this event celebrating the life of Jane Austen 200 years after her death. Featuring Austen experts and biographers Paula Byrne and Helena Kelly, curator of Chiswick House Dr Esme Whittaker, and Sense and Sensibility actress Imogen Stubbs, this will be a wonderful evening for all existing Austen fans and will be sure to create more!
Hampstead and Highgate Literary Festival | 14th-18th September
A chance for budding poets to receive some invaluable advice from award-winning poet Karen McCarthy Woolf. Bring along a line from a poem you admire and see what poetic magic Karen can help you weave from it!
Renowned poet and former Children’s Laureate Michael Rosen closes the festival discussing his new memoir. Don’t miss this opportunity to hear the life story of the legend of children’s storytelling – from a childhood in the Communist Jewish East End to a life-changing trip to East Germany.
Byres Road Book Festival | 22nd-25th September
Meet award-winning author of the heart-wrenching debut, ‘Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine’, Gail Honeyman. This wonderful Sunday Times bestseller will make you laugh and cry, so why not get reading now so you can come armed with questions for its creator!
Love. It is the subject at the heart (pun intended) of all storytelling – whether it be the presence of it, the absence, the gain, or the loss. Join this eclectic panel as they discuss what love means to them, how it’s presented in their narratives, and how to explore it in a whole new way.
This promises to be a truly inspirational and powerful event as two contributors, poet and writer David Constantine and writer Kit de Waal, reflect on their stories of racial and social injustice in British protests. Their tales are inspired by true events; the Oxford march in response to Enoch Powell’s ‘Rivers of Blood’ speech and the 1964 Smethwick Campaign.
Do you dabble in creative writing? Do you love BBC Radio 4’s short stories? Be sure to book yourself into a fascinating workshop run by BBC radio producer Liz Allard, teaching the necessary skills for engaging with people who listen to fiction. Liz will lead a series of workshops focusing on certain aspects of the creative process, and will be supported by Alison MacLeod, who has written widely for radio.
Immigration and refugees are key themes running throughout this year’s Festival. Hear the stunning second volume of Refugee Tales – a personal insight of asylum modelled on Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales – and promises to be as insightful as the first. Retelling ‘The Mother’s Tale’ is prize-winning author Marina Warner, and re-imagining ‘The Soldier’s Tale’ is award-winning novelist Neel Mukherjee.