Harrogate History Festival

Last weekend I was over in Harrogate at the now-annual Harrogate History Festival that's organised by the Historical Writers' Association. That's three-ish days of talks over a wide range of history-related writing (both fiction and non-fiction are represented here). I didn't take session notes this time out as it wasn't a writing practice-specific set of events (there was one session on historical fiction writing, but I didn't go to it!).


These kinds of events are both fun, educational, and useful too. For a start, as a writer whose work tends to invoke the historical, they show that you're not alone; a big hall full of folk of all ages underlines the idea that there are people out there that are into the same sorts of stuff as you. And folk of all ages as well; Michael Morpurgo effortlessly filled the hall with three generations of readers.

So, over the weekend, I went to sessions on (deep breath) women in WWII, historical villains, WWII spies, on England's long and noble history of defeating the French, on Thomas Cromwell, on breakthrough historical fiction authors on King John and Magna Carta. Oh, and keynote-style speeches from Melvyn Bragg and Ken Follett.  A particular high point was outgoing HWA chair Manda Scott interviewing Kate Mosse - I've never been the biggest fan of Mosse's fiction, but she came across so well I went straight out and bought a copy of her novel The Taxidermist's Daughter...

So a good weekend was had, ta very much, plus I came away with a load of promo material that gave me heads-up on dozens of upcoming historical novels, and a goodie bag that included a proof of a new Alison Weir novel on Katharine of Aragon.  

The next job then is to get to the level in a year or so where I'll be on the stage! Best get cracking...


My historical thriller The Prospect of This City  - a new take on the Great Fire of London - is now out. It's available in paperback from this very website, and also in ebook and paperback via Amazon