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The Brontë sisters were pioneering women writers, and our literary festival connects with this legacy to celebrate and showcase contemporary women’s writing. The 2016 festival is being programmed by our creative partner Tracy Chevalier.
Finding Your Way in - Writing Workshop with Glynis Charlton
September 9, 2.00pm
'Where do you get your ideas from?' has to be one of the most common questions put to writers. There's no straight answer. At this friendly workshop, suitable for beginners and developers, you'll discover ways into your writing - and see that ideas are all around us.
Glynis has been running friendly, informal workshops for many years and her work has been featured in several anthologies.
Meet the Editors with Mslexia
September 9, 7.00pm
The independent presses are the first step to literary stardom for many novelists - for writers of short fiction and poetry they are the only game in town. To find out what editors are looking for and how to submit, come along to an informal evening with three of the most influential editors in the region: Bluemoose Books, Comma Press and Dog Horn Publishing. Chaired by Mslexia's editor Debbie Taylor.
Afterwards, we're hosting a Mslexia Spotlight open-mic. Bring along your own work - a single poem or up to 700 words of prose - or simply stay on to see what other writers have been up to. The open-mic session will commence with readings from SI Leeds Literary Prize nominees.
How to Write a Synopsis
September 9, Ponden Hall, Stanbury
Back by popular demand, Debbie Taylor's foolproof method aims to take the pain out of writing the most difficult page of text a novelist ever has to compose. This is a workshop for writers who have already started or completed a novel. We will be working with your established characters and plotlines to tease out the key features to concentrate on. Debbie is the Editor of Mslexia and an experience tutor, as well as an acclaimed novelist.
An Arresting First Page
September 10, Ponden Hall, Stanbury
Jane Rogers will lead a workshop that will focus on helping you write a first page that will hook readers and grab the attention of agents and editors. Jane has published eight novels - including the Man Booker longlisted The Testament of Jessie Lamb - and a collection of short stories. She also writes drama for television and radio drama, and was until very recently Professor of Creative Writing on the premier MA course at Sheffield Hallam University. Jane judged Mslexia's 2015 Women's Short Story Competition and wrote a series of fiction masterclass features in the magazine in 2013.
The Magic of the Miniature
Featuring Tracy Chevalier, Jessie Burton and Grace McCleen
September 10, West Lane Baptist Centre, Haworth
Jessie Burton, Grace McCleen and Tracy Chevalier discuss the psychology of the miniature: why small things affect us emotionally, the process of writing about small things and the miniature in Charlotte Brontë's life. The evening will include readings from Jessie and Grace's work.
Jessie Burton was born in London in 1982, and studied at Oxford University and the Central School of Speech and Drama. Her debut novel, The Miniaturist, was released to huge acclaim in 2014, and was selected as Waterstones Book of the Year.
Grace McCleen is writer-in-residence at the Brontë Parsonage Museum for 2016, and has always been interested in miniaturisation. Her debut novel, The Land of Decoration (2012), was published in more than twenty languages and won the Desmond Elliott and Betty Trask Awards.
Tracy Chevalier is the author of eight novels, including the international bestseller Girl with a Pearl Earring, The Last Runaway and the recently released At the Edge of the Orchard. Born in Washington DC, she now lives in London with her husband and son.
The Artist Is In - Ligia Bouton
Meet the artist behind "A Correspondence"
September 11, Brontë Parsonage Museum
Ligia Bouton, the artist behind A Correspondence, will be in residence at the Museum between 10.30am and 11.30am to discuss her work on a series of collages in response to a letter written by Charlotte Brontë to her Belgian professor, Monsieur Constantin Heger. Her beautiful collages form part of Charlotte Great and Small, our bicentenary exhibition for 2016, which was curated by novelist Tracy Chevalier.
Ligia Bouton was born in São Paolo, Brazil and spent her childhood in London. Her creative work combines scuplture with performance, digital video and photography to recreate other people's stories. Recent projects have been shown at the National Museum of Women in the Arts, Guildhall Art Gallery in London, SITE Santa Fe, New Mexico Museum of Art, Philadelphia Art Alliance, the Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art and Station Independent in New York. She is currently Associate Professor of Art and Art History at the University of New Mexico.
LipService: Withering Walks
September 11, 11:30am / 2:00pm
Join us on a brand new and exclusive walking tour of Haworth village, by comedy duo LipService, as they take you on a journey of discovery to unearth some little known facts about the Brontë sisters. Who knew that Charlotte liked to pop down to the Brontë Balti for some poppadoms after sinking a few pints at the Old Black Bull, that Emily was inspired to name her hero after the street sign Heathcliff Mews, or that Anne secretly corresponded with Karl Marx?
Don your walking boots and waterproofs and join us for this whirlwind tour around crumbling cobbles, ghostly ginnels and blasted stumps.