@ The Word, National Centre for the Written Word, South Shields

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12 May 2018 - 25 May 2018

Full listings for the WRITE Festival are as follows:


Doctor Who Monsters, Crafts and Costumes

Saturday 12 May, 10am-4pm, FREE

A whole day of family fun including visits from Doctor Who monsters, a range of fun crafts and a fancy dress competition for you all to get involved with.

Hyde Fundraisers join us with an out-of-this-world assortment of creatures led by Davros, creator of the evil Daleks as well as an Ood and a Cybershade. Meet the creatures and even grab a photo.

Get involved in our monster fancy dress competition, judged by the evil mastermind himself, Davros, at 1.30pm in the Atrium.

Free drop-in sessions to make your own monster mask or sonic screwdriver will be on between 10.30am-12.30pm or 1.30-3.30pm (whilst stock lasts).

For more information and to book tickets: www.theworduk.org/write


Screenwriting Workshop

Saturday 12 May, 1-4pm, £3.50 per person

Join Northern Film + Media for an interactive workshop about screenwriting. This event is a must for any budding screenwriter and promises to be entertaining, insightful and lively.

For more information and to book tickets: www.theworduk.org/write


Writing other worlds – Cuckoo Young Writers

Saturday 12 May, 11am-1pm, FREE, For ages 12-19

Come along to our Cuckoo Young Writers group for an extra special sci-fi writing session. Led by a professional writer and supported by group leader, Lisa Burns, the group will take pen to paper to write about other worlds, create a parallel universe and to explore the extra-terrestrial.


Stuart Maconie: Jarrow, Road to Deep South (at The Customs House)

Saturday 12 May, 7.30pm

Tickets from £16, to buy tickets please visit The Customs House website.

In October 2016, writer and broadcaster Stuart Maconie walked 300 miles from Jarrow to London, retracing the famous Jarrow Crusade 80 years on, through a divided, complex country that echoes 1936 in many ways.

Stuart will reflect on Britain now and then at a special performance at The Customs House. Tickets available at www.customshouse.co.uk or 0191 454 1234.

For more information please visit: www.theworduk.org/write


Publishing workshops with Sixth Element

Join Sixth Element Publishing for two friendly and informal workshops, perfect for any writer who’d like to know more about the whole process of publishing.

How to illustrate and publish children’s books

Sunday 13 May, 10.30am-12.30pm, £3.50 per person, suitable for ages 16+

Author of the Thieves’ Guild sci-fi series, Gillie Hatton, will cover topics including how to write children’s books for all ages including young children, early readers, middle grade and young adults. She will also discuss styles of illustration including how to create print-ready artwork as well as typesetting, proofreading, print, distribution, sales and marketing.

An introduction to self-publishing

Sunday 13 May, 1.30-3.30pm, £3.50 per person, suitable for ages 16+

Graeme Wilkinson, author, artist, musician and graphic designer, will cover topics including how to write, self-edit and revise your final manuscript, the production process of typesetting, proofreading and print, as well as the all-important issues of distribution, sales and marketing.

For more information and to book tickets: www.theworduk.org/write


Silent book disco

Sunday 13 May, 2-3pm, FREE, Booking required

Perfect for everyone aged 5 years and above, this very special book-themed party is one for the whole family.

Brought to you by our friends Forum Books Corbridge, this is your chance to put on a pair of headphones, bop and dance to a playlist of songs inspired by some favourite children’s books. There will also be a children’s story treasure trail matching each track on the playlist to its book … can you find them all?!

For more information and to book tickets: www.theworduk.org/write


An afternoon of radio comedy with Ed Waugh

Sunday 13 May, 2-4pm, £6 per person, booking required, suitable for ages 16+

Join Ed Waugh and cast for two radio style, live on stage performances that will make you laugh out loud.

Including Where Did I Go Wrong? – a tale of an arena-style comedian superstar who is commissioned to write his autobiography. The problem is the drink, drugs and a near-fatal car accident means he can’t remember what he did back then. Followed by Stand Up For Middle Age – a story of Herbert Nutter, a father of two and recently made redundant, has turned 40 and is determined to write the book everyone has inside them. Unfortunately he has writers’ block before he writes a single word.

For more information and to book tickets: www.theworduk.org/write


Researching your historical novel with Nancy Revell

Monday 14 May, 9.45-10.45am, £3.50 per person, booking required, suitable for ages 16+

Author of The Shipyard Girls series, Nancy Revell, will lead an informal and interactive session on undertaking research for your historical novel as well as providing an insight into her former life as a tabloid journalist.

For more information and to book tickets: www.theworduk.org/write


Romance story exchange

Monday 14 & Friday 25 May, 10am-12noon, FREE

Come along to Carol Cooke’s drop-in sessions for writers, storytellers and anyone with a romantic tale. All you need to do is bring your story, and tell it! Then, you’ll get to exchange your story for another.


Choc Lit

Monday 14 May, 6-8pm, £5 per person, suitable for ages 16+, booking required

Calling all book lovers and budding authors! Join women’s fiction publisher Choc Lit for an evening of fun!

There’ll be a chance to meet local authors and hear about their writing journeys, quizzes and games (with prizes!), new and exciting books to discover, a goody bag, and – if you’re an aspiring author – there’ll be the opportunity to pitch your manuscript to a Choc Lit editor.

And of course, there’ll be plenty of chocolate!

For more information and to book tickets: www.theworduk.org/write


Meet Sarah Dunnakey

Tuesday 15 May, 6-7.30pm, £2 per person, booking required, suitable for ages 16+

Author Sarah Dunnakey will read from her debut novel ‘The Companion’, a mystery set in Yorkshire in the 1930s, as well as discuss the inspiration behind it, her journey to publication and her experience as a debut author.

Sarah is a question setter and verifier on a variety of TV quiz shows including Mastermind, University Challenge and Pointless. After her talk she will host a specially devised literary quiz that promises to be fun and illuminating.

For more information and to book tickets: www.theworduk.org/write


An audience with Cath Staincliffe (at Jarrow Library)

Wednesday 16 May, 1.30pm, £1 per person, booking required, for ages 16+

Cath Staincliffe the bestselling, award-winning novelist, a radio playwright and the creator of ITV’s hit series Blue Murder will be at Jarrow Library talking about her career. Gain an insight into her world and take the opportunity to ask any questions you may have.

Tickets available to purchase from Jarrow Library.


All at Sea

Wednesday 16 May, 2-3pm, £3.50 child, £2.50 adult, £1 children under 1 and £10.50 for a family of 4, suitable for families with children aged 2-7 years, booking required

Join illustrator Faye Hanson for an interactive workshop to celebrate the release of her new picture book, All at Sea: There’s a New Baby in the Family. Written by Gerry Byrne, All at Sea is a warm, sensitive and reassuring book about the arrival of a new baby in the family.

For more information and to book tickets: www.theworduk.org/write


An evening with Norman Kirtlan – Forensic Artist

Wednesday 16 May, 6.30-7.30pm, £2 per person, booking required, suitable for ages 16+

Norman Kirtlan – a Forensic Artist – will talk about his book Death From… which looks at the role of a coroner and some of the strange and tragic County Durham cases from the Victorian era.

If you’re a fan of crime dramas such as C.S.I or interested in forensic investigation, this event is not to be missed.

For more information and to book tickets: www.theworduk.org


Write your life

Friday 18 May, 10.30am-12.30pm, £2 suggested donation

Writer Carol Cooke will lead a session on writing from your own experiences – drawing upon your family stories, scandals, half-heard mysteries and romance. Bring along your own story, poem, idea or experience and work on it together to ‘write your life’.


History Wardrobe presents… Bad Girls and Bonnets

Friday 18 May, 7-8.30pm, £6.50 per person, booking required, suitable for ages 16+

A bold, brash and beautiful celebration of Jane Austen’s wicked women and a truly revelatory look at clothes and crime in the 18th century – an era when stocking-theft or silk-smuggling carried serious consequences.

Bad Girls and Bonnets will feature fabulous original costume items, criminal history and readings from the outrageous Miss Austen herself.

For more information and to book tickets: www.theworduk.org/write


Tom Kelly’s Residency Presentation

Saturday 19 May, 11am- 1pm, FREE

Join Tom Kelly as he showcases some of the fabulous projects he has worked on during his time in residency at The Word. He will read from Our Town, which will feature stories written by young people from South Tyneside as well as launch his new short story collection, Behind the Wall.

There will also be special performances from Men of the Tyne, who will be singing songs about ‘our’ river and the men that built the ships. Plus more!


An audience with LJ Ross

Saturday 19 May, 1.30-3.30pm, £3 per person, booking required

LJ Ross, author of the international bestselling series of DCI Ryan mystery novels, will be discussing her writing, her journey as an author, the character and setting for DCI Ryan as well as doing some readings.

After her debut novel, Holy Island, reached number one in the Amazon Kindle UK Bestsellers Chart, its sequels then continued on this success. Now having released the seventh DCI Ryan novel, LJ Ross continues to gain following and popularity.

For more information and to book tickets: www.theworduk.org/write


An ‘austentatious’ murder– A night of murder mystery

Sat 19 May, 6.30-8.30pm, £8.50 per person, booking required, suitable for ages 18+

Highly Suspect brings a brand new, fun, highly interactive murder mystery night featuring a range of eccentric characters who are likely to be the most suspicious suspects you’ll ever meet!

Acknowledging Jane Austen as one of mankind’s most gifted writers on the subject of love and the human condition, tech developers have created the ‘Austen Algorithm’ – the key to finding the perfect partner! The new app Dating Mr Darcy is due to be launched at an Austen themed gala celebration… But moments before the app goes live, its creator is found dead – someone has quite literally broken her heart!

Which of the Austen aficionados is a potential killer? What clues to the crime can be found within the works of the author, and just who will end up dating Mr Darcy?

For more information and to book tickets: www.theworduk.org/write


Inpress Day: Inpress presents… Tricks of the Trade: A guide to the world of publishing

Join us for a day of events all about the world of publishing.

Publishing demystified

Sunday 20 May, 10.30-11.30am, £2 per person, suitable for ages 16+

This session offers a practical overview of the publishing process from conception to print, giving budding authors, publishers and anyone interested in learning about the book trade an insight into how that one flash of inspiration makes its way onto the bookshelves.

Getting your voice heard

Sunday 20 May, 12–1pm, £2 person, suitable for ages 16+

This session explores the increasingly diverse number of ways to get our voices heard, both through utilising new technology and grass-roots print movements. From self-publishing zines to submitting poems to anthologies, there has never been more creative ways to get your work out there and start on the track to publishing success.

Author journeys

Sunday 20 May, 1.30-2pm, £2 per person, suitable for ages 16+

Stories from the ‘other’ side! This session will give you an insight into the personal journeys of a panel of authors – who will discuss how they ended up getting published.

The big question

Sunday 20 May, 3-4pm, £2 per person, suitable for ages 16+

The question we all want to know the answer to – “how do I get my book published?” In this session you will talk to an author, a publisher and a literary agent to discuss what it takes to see your book in print. With a mixture of practical advice and good old fashioned encouragement, there will be an opportunity to ask questions and find out more.

For more information on all Inpress sessions and to book tickets please visit: www.theworduk.org/write


New writing read through

Monday 21 May, 2-4pm, FREE, (Over 25s category)

Following a competition to find new writing talent by The Customs House, shortlisted writers will have their work performed by professional actors at this rehearsed reading.


How to edit your writing with Celia Bryce 

Monday 21 May, 9.30am-12.30pm, £3.50 per person, booking required, suitable for ages 16+

Editing – either love it or hate it, there’s no getting away from the fact that most writers can’t produce a perfect first draft. There will need to be a second and a third. Possibly more…

Whatever your thoughts on it, wherever you are with your writing, it’s good to edit your work especially if you want to send it in to a competition, an agent, a publisher or to a literary consultant.

In this session, Celia will explore ways of checking and improving your writing with a series of practical exercises using sample texts.

For more information and to book tickets: www.theworduk.org/write


County Durham folk tales with Adam Bushnell

Monday 21 May, 6.30-7.30pm, £2 per person, suitable for ages 16+, booking required

Join author and storyteller, Adam Bushnell, as he brings together stories from the rugged coastlines, limestone cliffs, remote moorland, pastoral dales and settled coalfields of County Durham. In this treasure trove of tales you will meet the evil fairies of Weardale, the shape-changing witch from Easington, the Bishop Auckland boar, the Dun Cow of Durham City and many other characters – all as fantastical and powerful as the landscape they inhabit.

Retold in an engaging style and richly illustrated with unique line drawings, these humorous, clever and enchanting folk tales are sure to be enjoyed and shared time and again.

For more information and to book tickets: www.theworduk.org/write


Meet Jenn Ashworth

Tuesday 22 May, 6.30-7.30pm, £2 per person, suitable for ages 16+

Join Jenn Ashworth as she reads from her critically acclaimed novel Fell – set in the 1960s on the edge of Morecambe Bay and telling a story of hope, loss and miracles.

Jenn will be speaking about location and the sense of place in her work (all her novels are set in the North of England) as well as the challenges of researching a novel set before she was born.

For more information and to book tickets: www.theworduk.org/write


Monsters of the mind with Niel Bushnell

Wednesday 23 May, 5.30-6.30pm, FREE, booking required, suitable for 8-12 year olds

Award-winning children’s author Niel Bushnell will help you create your own mythical monsters and creepy creatures using just your imagination and sinister sounds.

Inspired by his work as an animator for shows including Doctor Who and The Dumping Ground, Niel will challenge you to imagine your own scary monsters, draw them and help you to write your own monster-packed adventures!

For more information and to book tickets: www.theworduk.org/write


Poetry slam (at The Stags Head)

Thursday 24 May, 7.30-9.30pm, £3 per person, ages 18+, booking required

Join Jenni Pascoe and a group of amateur ‘slammers’ at The Stags Head in South Shields for a fun and fast-paced poetry slam!

If you’ve never been to a poetry slam, you’re in for a treat! You’ll see some amateur poets as well as Jenni Pascoe, showcasing their slam skills with a range of brilliant, angry, funny, ranting and passionate poems.

For more information and to book tickets: www.theworduk.org/write


New writing read through (at The Customs House)

Thursday 24 May, 7-9pm, FREE, (Under 25s category)

Join us at The Customs House for an evening of rehearsed readings which will have been shortlisted from a new writing competition launched by The Customs House.


An audience with Kevin Maguire

Friday 25 May, 7-8.30pm, £5 per person, ages 16+, booking required

Kevin Maguire is one of the country’s best known journalists. He is The Daily Mirror’s associate editor and is on TV and radio almost daily – appearing on Have I Got News for You and Question Time.

He pens a weekly column in the New Statesman magazine and before the Mirror worked at The Guardian and Daily Telegraph.

Still calling South Shields ‘home’, Kevin will be back for WRITE Festival 2018!

You will be in for an evening of entertainment as Kevin talks about his outstanding career so far, telling personal stories and giving an insight into his life.

For more information and to book tickets: www.theworduk.org/write


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