Summer 2015 Edition

Listing 350+ Literary Festivals throughout England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales, 80+ in Australia & New Zealand and 500+ worldwide. Organisers can update details or send new listing info here. Authors, illustrators and poets are also invited to list their details. For upcoming event notification Register for our monthly newsletter. PR people media releases here. Thanks to the site 50,000 unique visitors over the last month, a new record. Ed: Kev Parker - Take me to the festival! June Literary Festivals | July Literary Festivals | August Literary Festivals

Festival and Award News

Man Booker Longlist 2015 03-Aug-2015

The longlist, or ‘Man Booker Dozen’, for the £50,000 Man Booker Prize was anno..

Sevenoaks Literary Celebration 2015 Programme 19-Jul-2015

TWO WEEKS OF BOOK FEVER IN SEVENOAKS Newly elected Oxford Professor Poetry Simon Armi..

Blenheim Palace Festival of Literature, Film and Music launches 2015 programme 18-Jul-2015

Previously known as 'Woodstock' then the Blenheim Palace Literary Festival at Woodstock, t..

Sydney Writers' Festival: Mistakes We’ve Made and Other Lessons in Feminism 18-Jul-2015

Even the most intelligent, motivated and good-humoured souls would find it difficult to solve gender..

UK Goverment lifts remaining barriers on sending books to prisoners 15-Jul-2015

English PEN is delighted that the Secretary of State for Justice has relaxed all restrictions preven..

Warwick Prize Longlist 2015 25-Jun-2015

The £25,000 biennial literary prize, run by the University of Warwick, is an international..

Agatha Christie Festival 2015 - The 125th Anniversary Edition Looking Strong 24-Jun-2015

Fresh insights into the life, literature and legacy of the world’s best-selling author are..

Aldeburgh Eight Winners Announced by The Poetry Trust 24-Jun-2015

‘Aldeburgh Eight’ is an eight day course linked to the international Aldeburgh Poetr..

Australia: Sophie Laguna Wins $60,000 Miles Franklin Literary Award 24-Jun-2015

Perpetual, as Trustee of the Miles Franklin Literary Award have announced the 2015 Miles Franklin Aw..

Britain's Leading Children's Book Prize: Winners of Carnegie and Greenaway Medals Announced 24-Jun-2015

Tanya Landman’s Carnegie winner, Buffalo Soldier, inspired by female African American slave wh..

New award for Irish sports writing sponsored by Setanta Sports 24-Jun-2015

A new award recognising the best in Irish sports writing has been announced by Setanta Sports. S..

Shoreham Wordfest 2015 Programme Coming Together Beautifully 24-Jun-2015

Festival Director Rosalind Turner has kindly provided a progress report on the 2015 Shoreham Wo..

Winners for Canadian 2015 Trillium Book Award announced 24-Jun-2015

Four Ontario Authors Receive Province's Top Literary Award -Winners of Ontario's foremo..

2015 PEN Ackerley Prize Shortlist 09-Jun-2015

English PEN has announced the shortlist for the 2015 PEN Ackerley Prize for memoir and life writ..

English PEN, PEN Turkey and PEN International Seriously Concerned for Can Dündar 09-Jun-2015

English PEN, PEN Turkey and PEN International are seriously concerned for Can Dündar, editor-in..

Gedling Book Festival - June 12th-14th, 2015 09-Jun-2015

The Gedling Book Festival will take place from Friday 12 June until Sunday 14 June at Arnot Hill Hou..

Nebula Award Winners Announced by Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers 09-Jun-2015

The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America have announce the winners of the 2014 Nebula ..

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Edinburgh International Book Festival

edinburh_international_book_festivalA festival of open horizons and energising ideas, at the heart of Edinburgh UNESCO City of Literature. 17 days, 750 events, 800 authors, over 40 different countries represented. Bookworms, bibliophiles and internationally acclaimed authors and thousands of aspiring writers will descend on Edinburgh. It's massive and wonderful. When? 15– 31 August, 2015 Where? Charlotte Square Gardens, Edinburgh, Scotland. More

International Agatha Christie Festival

The International Agatha Christie Festival (IACF) agatha_christie_festivalhonours the novelist and playwright Dame Agatha Christie – known throughout the world as the “Queen of Crime. The festival takes place in the elegant seaside town of Torquay, in Devon, UK, where the author was born on 15 September 1890.. When? The Agatha Christie Festival 11th -20th September, 2015 Where? Torre Abbey.Torquay, Devon, England More

Borderlines Carlisle Book Festival

2015 sees the return of Borderlines Carlisle Book Festival in this ancient Cumbrian city after a successful borderlines_carlise_book_festivalfirst year in 2014. An engaging a mix of talks and workshops is planned and the proceedings will kick off with a Murder Mystery Dinner on the Thursday 3rd September.

Carlisle has a long tradition of arts and crafts, and, with a population in excess of 100,000, the addition of a literary festival adds a welcome dimension. When? Thursday 3rd-Sunday 6th September, 2015 Where? Carlisle, Cumbria. Locations include the Crown and Mitre Hotel, Carlisle Tullie House , Carlisle City Library. Who? 2015 - Owen Jones, Terry Waite, Simon Yates, Gervase Phinn, Juliet Barker + More

Beyond Borders International Festival of Literature and Thought

beyond_borders_international_festival_of_literatureThis year’s speakers include First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, Scottish Conservative Leader Ruth Davidson, Alex Salmond MP and foreign correspondent Janine di Giovanni. We also welcome back BBIF regulars such as Allan Little, Jim Naughtie and William Dalrymple When? Saturday 22nd August - Sunday 23rd August 2015  Where? Traquair House, Innerleithen, Scotland. More



Rachel Kelly

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NEW IN 2015

Jersey Festival of Words


A new five day literary festival on the beautiful Channel Island of Jersey in 2015 featuring visiting writers, homegrown talent, community events and an extensive schools programme. A welcome new addition to the burgeoning Island Literary Movement!

When? Sept 30th- Oct 4th, 2015 Where? Jersey, Channel Islands Who? In 2015 - Carol Ann Duffy, Owen hillindon_-literary_festivalSheers, Irma Kurtz , Simon Barnes, Will Smith+ More

Hillingdon Literary Festivalwill_self_author

The inaugural Hillingdon Literary Festival (briefly named the Uxbridge Literary Festival) will feature a variety of presentations, readings, discussions, masterclasses and performances with successful contemporary writers and local writing groups. All events will be free, albeit ticketed, and held at Brunel University London, the Uxbridge Library, Southlands in West Drayton, and the Great Barn in Ruislip. A warm welcome to all involved. When? 16-18 October 2015 Where? London Borough of Hillingdon Who? Will Self (right), Kate Mosse, Deborah Moggach, Benjamin Zephaniah, Laura Barnett. Read more

NiddFest Literary Festival

Set in the glorious landscape of Upper Nidderdale, in the heart of the Yorkshire Dales, NiddFest is a unique new, family friendly festival, offering a weekend of talks and outside events for nature lovers of all ages. Highlights of the 2015 programme include the opening event, an exclusive evening with the festival’s patron and Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy, and Gilniddfestlian Clarke, National Poet of Wales and award winning novelist Evie Wyld.

Sunday 26th July sees Jackie Bennett, gardener and journalist discussing 20 inspiring gardens created by our most famous writers, followed by TV chef and author Valentine Warner treating festival-goers to a revealing talk on nature’s bountiful larder and its inspiration in the kitchen. That morning will see a foraging event, with edible plants picked from Nidderdale’s hedgerows, to be included in a dish prepared by Valentine at his event. The festival closes with Herdwick Shepherd, James Rebanks, whose tale of lifeas a shepherd in the Lake District has been one of this year’s literary phenomenons. When? 24-26 July, 2015 Where? Upper Nidderdale, in the heart of the Yorkshire Dales +More

revolving_words_festival_of_railway_literatureRevolving Words Festival of Railway Literature

The inaugural Revolving Words Festival of Railway Literature, 23rd-25th Oct 2015, is a delightful innovation that is part of the 25th birthday celebrations of the Wensleydale Railway Association and in support of the Wensleydale Railway. Given the enormous role that railways have played in our history, plus the senseof pleasure that trains give to so many, this festival is a welcome addition to the literary scene. When? Friday 23rd - Sunday 25th October 2015 Where? Bedale, North Yorkshire More

October 2015melvyn_bragg

Dulwich Literary Festival

Festival Director, Sheila O'Reilly, has pulled together a potent line-up for the 2nd Dulwich Literary Festival run by Dulwich Books of West Dulwich in London. The 2015 theme of 'Time & Place'. When? Friday 16th October to Sunday 18th October, 2015 Where? Dulwich, London Who? 2015 - Vince Cable, Prue Leith, Huw Edwards, Kate Mosse, Melvyn Bragg(right), Helen Lederer. More

Summer of Literary Festivals

JUNE 2015

Althorp Literary Festival - 11-13 June, 2015

BeaconLit - The Beacon Villages festival of books and writing - 27 June 2015

Belfast Book Festival - 8-14 June 2015

Borders Book Festival - June 12 -15, 2015

Bridlington Poetry Festival - 12 - 21 June 2015

Broadstairs Dickens Festival -Saturday 13th to Friday 19th June 2015

Chalke Valley History Festival -June 22- 28, 2015

Charles Causley Festival - 12 – 14 June 2015

Chichester Fesitval - mid June/ mid Jul

Crossing the Tees: Middlesbrough and Stockton Book Festival (formerly Middlesbrough Literary Festival)

Dalkey Book Festival - 11-24 June, 2015

Eastbourne Book Fest - September 19 -20, 2015

Felixstowe Book Festival - 27 & 28 June 2015

Flamstead Book Festival - 5th and 6th of June 2015

Hay Festival Kells - 25-28 June, 2015

Hebden Bridge Festival - 26 June- July 6, 2015

Immrama Lismore Festival of Travel Writing -June 11- 14, 2015

Leicester Book Festival - June - 5th to early July 2015

London Short Story Festival - 18 - 21 June 2015

Manchester Childrens Book Festival - 26th June - July 5, 2015

Prestwich Book Festival - 2015 TBC

Proms at St Jude's Music and Literary Festival (Hampstead, London)- Literary weekend 20-21 June 2015

Stoke Literary Festival - 12-13 June, 2015

Stoke Newington Literary Festival - June 5-7 2015

Tiverton Literary Festival - 3rd-6th June, 2015

Winchester Writers’ Conference Festival and Book Fair - 19-21 June, 2015

JULY 2015

Africa Writes - Festival of African Literature - 3-5th July 2015

Ampthill Literary Festival - Saturday 11th July, 2015

Buxton Festival, Derbyshire - 10- 26 July, 2015

Caerleon Festival - Literature on the Lawn - South Wales - Saturday 4th July, 2015

Chichester Fesitval - June/mid- July

Curious Arts Festival (Arts festival with a literary stream) -17-19 July 2015

Dartington Hall Way with Words Festival - 4 - 14 July 2015

Words @ Frome Festival -July 3-12, 2015

Harrogate International Festivals’ Raworths Literature and Lecture Series - 2-13 July, 2015

John Hewitt International Summer School -Monday 27th July – Friday 31st July 2015

Lewes Speakers Festival -17th July – 19th July 2015

NiddFest Literary Festival - Celebrating Nature in Writing - 24-26 July, 2015

John Clare Festival -10 - 12 July 2015

Latitude Festival - July 16 -19, 2015

Ledbury Poetry Festival -July 3 – 12 July, 2015

Leicester Book Festival - June - 5th to early July 2015

Manchester Childrens Book Festival - 26th June - July 5, 2015

Penzance Literary Festival -July 8th to July 11th, 2015

Port Eliot Lit Fest, Cornwall -July 30th - August 2nd, 2015

Stratford-upon-Avon Poetry Festival - July 2- August 2, 2015

Theakston Old Peculier Harrogate Crime Writing Festival -16-19 July, 2015

TS Eliot Festival - Early July - July 12- 18, 2015

West Cork Literary Festival - July 12- 18, 2015


Cirencester Children's Literary Festival -27th July - 4th August, 2015

Edinburgh International Book Festival -15– 31 August, 2015

John Hewitt International Summer School - 27th-31st July 2015

Cape Clear Island Storytelling Festival


Cape Clear Storytelling Festival, now in its 20th year, is an annual storytelling festival in a stunning setting where Irish and international storytellers and musicians are invited to perform.

Each of the three days offers a variety of activities and concerts to suit all ages. Six different venues are chosen for the various events and the island's stunning scenery creates a unique atmosphere for this storytelling event with a difference. When? 4- 6 September, 2015 Where? Cape Clear is Ireland’s southernmost inhabited island situated 8 miles off the coast of Baltimore in West Cork.  Who? Dovie Thomason, Birgit Lehner, Michael Harvey, Clare Muireann Murphy, Colum Sands More

The Rise and Rise of Literary Festivals

Kevin Parker explores the phenomenal increase in literary festivals over the last decade. Why are they so popular? What do they contribute? What's in for the public and authors? Read More

Cornwall: Literary Festival County

Cornwall is fast laying claim to the being the UK's 'Literary Festival County' with a growing list of literary gatherings scheduled throughout the year.'s Kevin Parker gives an overview of the Cornish Literary Calendar. More

The Times & Sunday Times Cheltenham Literature Festival

This autumn The Times Checheltenham_town_hallltenham Literature Festival will welcome over 600 of the world’s greatest writers, poets, politicians, thinkers and stars to Cheltenham for an inspiring mix of debate and discussion. Over 100,000 tickets sell for the ten day event. As big as it gets.

When? October 2-11, 2015 Where? Cheltenham Town Hall (GL50 1QA) Imperial Square and Montpellier Gardens (GL50 1SD) - Who? John BanvilleJulian BarnesAnne Enright, and Peter Carey bring the total number of Booker Prize winners speaking at the Festival to an impressive six including Pat Barker and Salman Rushdie.

Peter Carey will be at the Festival to receive The Sunday Times Award for Literary Excellence, which was last year presented to Kazuo Ishiguro in a completely sold out Town Hall event.

Patrick Gale, author of A Perfectly Good Man, will also be appearing, as will The Time Traveller’s Wife author Audrey Niffenegger and Whitbread Prize-winning Jeanette Winterson.

Once again, Cheltenham will also be celebrating debut writers and this year’s Festival will see talks from rising stars including Laura BarnettClaire FullerJulia Rochester Sarah LeipcigerFrancesca Haig and Helena Coggan.

Rapper George the Poet has already been announced as a Guest Director and he heads up an incredibly strong poetry strand, which includes talks from Les Murray, Oxford’s new professor of poetry Simon ArmitagePaul Muldoon and Wendy Cope.

Non-fiction names newly announced today include Robert Macfarlane with his recent bestseller Landmarks and Shakespearean scholar James Shapiro talking about 1606; the year of King LearMacbeth, and Anthony and Cleopatra. Historians Robert Tombsand Ian Kershaw also join the line-up.

Nigel Lawson will join Gus O’Donnell and Alistair Darling to explain ‘How to Write a Budget’ and James Rubin, former US Assistant Secretary of State will talk about the Cold War.

Celebrated choreographer Matthew Bourne will talk about his incredible life in dance and West End star and online sensation Carrie Hope Fletcher will discuss the perils of celebrity. More

Featured Authors


Rachel Kelly is the author of Black Rainbow: How words healed me – my journey through depression, published by Hodder & Stoughton in 2014.

In an extended bibiographical piece, Rachel shares her journey through depression and back again More

Previously Featured Authors - Julia Suzuki - Clive Cussler - Kev Reynolds - Michael Morpurgo - Ricky Baxter -

Elif Şafak has been named by critics have as “one of the most distinctive voices in contemporary Turkish and world literature”. She is an award-winning novelist and the most widely read woman writer in Turkey. Elif is appearing at a number of UK Literary Festivals this season More

Previously Featured Authors- Carol-Ann Duffy - Jill Dawson - Hilary Mantel - Beatrix Campbell - DD Johnston - Danielle Steel

Margaret Atwood is the author of more than forty volumes of poetry, children’s literature, fiction, and non-fiction, including The Edible Woman (1969), The Handmaid’s Tale (1985), The Robber Bride (1994), Alias Grace (1996), and The Blind Assassin. She is appearing at a number of UK Literary Festivals this season More

Previously Featured Authors - Ian Rankin - Catherine Fisher - Sebastian Faulks - Dougie Brimson - -Ruth Rendell


Thor Ewing’s Viking connection began early, when he was named after the Norse god of thunder. Since graduating from Durham in 1989 (where he studied Medieval Literature specialising in Old Norse) he has worked as an independent scholar, writing speaking and consulting on all things Viking, and providing translations of medieval texts from Old Norse, Old English, Old Welsh, Old Gaelic and Latin. More