Crime Festivals I’m excited about (Part Two) Newcastle Noir @NewcastleNoir @litandphil @CollinsJacky


We’re only a few weeks away from Newcastle Noir, one of the few festivals I get to every year (well, it is my home city)! There’s a fabulous weekend (and a free fringe week) to look forward to, and I’m very excited!

You can get tickets to individual panels or day passes or weekend passes. On the ticketing website the fringe then individual panels are listed first followed by the day passes, the weekend passes, then any additional events that are over the weekend but not covered by the festival pass (full price then concession price). The full programme is available here and tickets are available here.

Here are just some of the events to look forward to:

Crime in Translation

Crime fiction has been breaking down European barriers for years, but only with the help of the linguists. Find out how they deal with the nuances and subtleties that don’t translate from language to language.

Lilja Sigurðardóttir is a very successful Icelandic crime-writer and an award-winning playwright. The first of her Rekyavik Noir Trilogy Snare was published in English last year.

Quentin Bates has written seven books in his Gunnhilder Mystery Series, with number eight out at the end of the year. He has translated books by Lilja Sigurðardóttir and Ragnar Jonasson.

Roxanne Bouchard weaves poetry and geography to delve into the world of her characters. We Were the Salt of the Sea is her fifth novel but the first to be translated into English.

David Warriner once sold his soul to the world of corporate translation but he’s clawing it back through the art of literary translation. David translates from French to English.

Chaired by Dr Jacky Collins – Programme Director of Newcastle Noir

New Blood

Judging by the speed at which some writers travel to the top of the book charts, it might not be long before these three will be on the best-sellers lists.

Sandra Ireland released Beneath the Skin in 2017 and it was shortlisted for a Saltire Society First Novel Award. Her new psychological thriller is a modern gothic tale of sibling rivalry.

Vicky Newham has just had her debut novel Turn a Blind Eye published. It draws on her psychology background and her time living and working in East London.

Robert Scragg successfully pitched his first novel What Falls Beneath the Cracks to the Dragon’s Pen panel at the 2016 Theakston’s Crime Writing Festival.

GB Williams specialises in complex, fastpaced crime novels. Her next book Locked Down comes out later this year.

Chaired by Vic Watson – Writer and Creative Writing Tutor

Ann Cleeves in Conversation

Ann Cleeves was 2017’s recipient of the Crime Writer’s Association Diamond Dagger, the highest honour in British crime writing. The award recognises authors whose crime writing careers have been marked by sustained excellence, and who have made a significant contribution to the genre. Ann is multi award-winning, and has written 31 novels, including two series which are now on prime time TV – Vera and Shetland. Ann has also written a non-fiction title about Shetland. In 2015, she hosted the inaugural Shetland Noir festival on the Shetland Islands.

Before her writing career took off, Ann worked as a probation officer, bird observatory cook and auxiliary coastguard. Cleeves has two daughters, six grandchildren and lives in Northumberland.

Martha Hillier is a screen-writer whose credits include Vera, Versailles and The Halcyon.

Fun Lovin’ Crime Writers – NOTE: NOT INCLUDED IN FESTIVAL PASS – takes place in other venue

Imagine if some fabulous crime-writers discovered they were all wannabe Rock Stars too and decided to form a band. It happened! It was an open mic night at The House of Blues in New Orleans in 2016. Fuelled by whiskey, beer and some criminal intent the best-sellers took to the stage and started murdering much-loved tunes.

Following a blistering debut performance in Edinburgh last year, the crime-fiction super-group are coming to Newcastle as part of the inimitable Newcastle Noir festival. The Fun Lovin’ Crime Writers deliver the most rocking night out this side of a Library. The bastard child of Johnny Cash and AC/DC, in other words.

Mark Billingham (guitar and vocals), Stuart Neville (guitar and vocals), Doug Johnstone (drums and vocals), Val McDermid (vocals), Luca Veste (Bass) and Chris Brookmyre (guest vocals).

Anyone coming to join me for this one?!


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