International best-selling novelist, Louis de Bernières, visited Alderney in September, providing Islanders and visitors with a rare opportunity to meet this master storyteller in two events: at a Book Club at The Georgian House in the morning, and then in conversation with Alderney LitFest chairman, Anthony Riches, at the Alderney Cinema later that afternoon. On the Sunday evening, Louis then joined local musicians at The Georgian House where he treated the crowd to an excellent display of his guitar skills and folk songs of his own composition. When he left on the Monday, Louis said he would love to return to Alderney and hoped we would invite him back. That we will!
The Killer Women - Criminally Good Writing
5 November 2016
What better way to spend the 5th November than a day of plotting, murder, and mystery with Killer Women authors Kate Rhodes, Helen Smith, Louise Voss, and Laura Wilson. The crime-themed day dawned with a coffee morning book club with Helen Wilson getting behind the scenes and into the minds of the characters in her thriller, A Thousand Lies. This was followed in the afternoon with a lively panel discussion at the Alderney Cinema on "Killer Women: murder for fun and profit", where the authors talked about their particular insight into the world of crime writing and why women made the best thriller writers.
Finally, the day ended will a sell-out murder whodunnit dinner at The Georgian House, where budding sleuths dressed as their favourite detectives, tried (and failed) to solve the mystery of who killed Eddie Glass. In all, it was an exciting day, leaving people eager for another stab at solving a murder.
Ann Cleeves in Alderney
22-23 June 2017
Sunday Times bestseller and creator of popular TV series Vera and Shetland, Ann Cleeves, visited Alderney in June, providing Islanders and visitors with a rare opportunity to meet the UK's "Queen of Crime" in two events: at The Alderney Cinema for a talk on 22nd June, and at The Georgian for a Murder Mystery dinner on the 23rd June. At Alderney Cinema, Ann entertained the packed house, in conversation with QuayFM presenter Tony Le Blanc, discussing the blending of fact and fiction in crime writing and the accuracy of forensic methods demonstrated in the series, together with her forensic pathologist adviser, Professor James Grieve, who appears as himself in Ann's most recent Shetland book. On the Friday, Ann hosted a sell-out Murder-Mystery Dinner, Bannocks and Blood, on script based on her latest Shetland novel, Cold Earth, at The Georgian House. Only one person accurately guessed the murderer and the reasons behind it, but everyone had a good time trying to figure it out.
The Romani Walk Authors
16-17 October 2015
Popular historical novelists, Ben Kane, Anthony Riches, and Russell Whitfield were in Alderney for the weekend of 16th-18th October to talk about their books, writing historical fiction, and their adventures marching the Romani way as soldiers of Rome. In May 2014, the three authors donned three and a half stone of authentic Roman armour and walked 130 miles along the Appian Way to raise money for Combat Stress and Médecins Sans Frontières, a feat recorded in a documentary produced of the walk, The Road to Rome, which was shown at the Alderney Cinema on 17th October to celebrate World Archaeology Day.
The Suspense Event - “Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again.”
14 November 2020
A packed audience joined bestselling thriller-writer Rachel Abbott in a creative writing workshop, The Suspense Event, to explore some of the techniques of successful suspense writing. The workshop started on the Friday evening with the film showing of the iconic 1940s version of Rebecca, starring Laurence Olivier and Joan Fontaine. Using Rebecca as a guide, Rachel and forensic linguist Isabel Picornell took the workshop participants through the basics of building suspense into their stories and described how linguistic choices could enhance their characters and create richer, more believable and enthralling scenarios. It was such a success that we promised to run a similar workshop exploring another classic novel in the future.