I am absolutely delighted that Travelling in the Dark has won this year’s Hall and Woodhouse DLF Writing Prize. The prize was set up in 2018 by Dorchester Literary Festival organisers Janet Gleeson and Paul Atterbury to celebrate writing from the West Country.
The £1000 prize was awarded by guest of honour Minette Walters at a ceremony held in the Duchess of Cornwall Inn, Poundbury, Dorset on 18 July 2019. My thanks to Lucinda Gray and Anthony Woodhouse of Hall and Woodhouse who kindly sponsor this award.
It was lovely to meet the other shortlisted writers and hear readings from their books. They were Susmita Bhattacharya for her short story collection Table Manners, Dee La Vardera for her work of non-fiction The Road to Civitella, and runner up Maria Donovan for The Chicken Soup Murder.
The DLF announcement can be found here.
I’m delighted that Travelling in the Dark is on the long-list for the Dorchester Literary Festival Writing Prize 2019. Now in its second year, the prize is for works of fiction and non fiction by writers from, or connected to, the South West.
Another book which is close to my heart is also on the long-list – Corpse Path Cottage by Margaret Scutt. Margaret was an accomplished author of two historical novels, but her crime novels failed to find a publisher during her life time. Set in the 1950s, an era it captures perfectly, Corpse Path Cottage was finally published last year more than six decades after it was written.
It’s just over a month until the inaugural Greenway Literary Festival. I’ll be discussing the importance of place in stories with Tom Vowler on Sunday 9 June at 2.30pm. Details here.
A local launch of Travelling in the Dark will take place on Tuesday 23 October at the Falmouth Bookseller, 6-8pm, free event, all welcome. We’ll be joined for the evening by Louise Boland, CEO of Fairlight Books.
The following morning, 24 October 8.30 to 9.30am, come along and be inspired by Louise’s innovative approach to publishing as she shares her passion for literary fiction at Stranger Collective’s Creative Breakfast. Free event but book your place here.
Felicity Notley will be reading her work from Cornish Short Stories on Saturday 6 October at the North Cornwall Book Festival, 10am, Main Marquee, as part of the Cream of Cornish event alongside Lucy Wood and other local authors. Free event.
Many thank to Blogger’s Bookshelf for choosing Travelling in the Dark as their Book Club choice for August 2018. I love the infographic they’ve created about my novella, and I’m particularly pleased to see that everyone who read it would recommend it to others.
You can read more about Sam Kalda, the Folio artist who designed the beautiful illustrations on the Fairlight Moderns covers, in this interview on Fairlight Books website.
I’m absolutely delighted that Travelling in the Dark will be launched at the UK’s oldest book store, Hatchards Piccadilly, on 12 July at 6.30pm. Four of the authors from the Fairlight Moderns series will be reading and signing books along with the wonderful team from Fairlight Books, our families and friends. Piccadilly was the first place I worked after arriving in London twenty-five years ago so I am thrilled to be returning there for this special occasion.
As I began writing Travelling in the Dark over six years ago, the publication of this book is the culmination of a long journey. My book has found an excellent home with the creative, thoughtful and inspirational new publisher Fairlight Books. I greatly admire their enthusiasm and determination in championing literary fiction and the beautiful but often over-looked form of the novella.
You can find out more in this interview on the Fairlight Books website.
There are also some new reviews and ratings up on Goodreads.
Travelling in the Dark is available from all good bookshops and online. There are a variety of ways to order which you see on the publisher’s book page here.
We are also out and about at some festivals with Cornish Short Stories this month. First of all with reading and discussion in Paper Wings at Penzance Litfest on Saturday 7 July at The Acorn.
And then we’ll be back with more readings at the truly unique gathering that is Port Eliot Festival on Friday 27 July at 1.45pm and Saturday 28 July at 2pm in The Tiddy Tent.
Please note that both these events are ticketed.
Cornish Short Stories: A Collection of Contemporary Writing was officially published on 2 April with books due in shops and pre-orders to be dispatched on 9 April. It’s wonderful to see the culmination of so much work find its way out into the world.
The image on the left is one of four beautiful woodcut illustrations by artist Angela Annesley included amongst work by nineteen Cornish writers including Tom Vowler, Katherine Stansfield, Cathy Galvin, Rob Magnuson Smith and many more new and established voices.
You can find out more on the Cornish Short Stories website and order copies from your local bookseller or online.
An unexpected Easter gift was a proof copy of my novella, Travelling in the Dark, from Fairlight Books. It is everything I could have hoped for – a gorgeous design, creamy paper and a surprising substance given it is a novella. Fairlight Books will be at the London Book Fair from 10-12 April in Hall 6, Stand 6F 100, so do stop by and say hello if you are passing.
I am absolutely delighted to share some excellent news. My novella, Travelling in the Dark, will be published on 11 July 2018.
My publisher, Fairlight Books in Oxford, are keen to promote literary fiction and also want their books to look beautiful. This is already apparent in the care and attention they have given my manuscript and in the gorgeous cover design.
A recent report by the Arts Council set out the very real threats facing literary fiction. In these dark days for the genre, the energy and enthusiasm of Fairlight’s approach has been an inspiration to me.
Travelling in the Dark is one a series of five novellas: the others are Bottled Goods by Sophie van Llewyn, There Are Things I Know by Karen B Golightly, Inside the Bone Box by Anthony Ferner and The Driveway has Two Sides by Sara Marchant. Find out more here
Fairlight Books are open for submissions of literary fiction. You can find further details here. In keeping with their wish to treat all writers who takes the time to submit to them in a fair and open manner, they have a Submissions Code of Practice.
Over the next weeks and months, I’d be posting regularly about this book’s journey to publication and the intriguing literary form known as the novella.