Where you’ll find me this weekend

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title_bob Taking Place from the 15th – 18th May at the Marriott Royal Hotel, Bristol, UK.

With a whopping 50+ events (be prepared to make some tough decisions over what you attend) scheduled over the four days, it’s an action packed four days with plenty of time for author interaction.

It’s where I will be from Friday morning, until Sunday lunchtime. If you are heading there come look me up, if I’m not in a panel you’ll most probably find me in the bar. I’ll be the one in the hat. Come say hello.

Bloody Scotland Short Story Competition

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Today Bloody Scotland has announced the launch of this years short story competition.

The winner will receive £1,000, a bottle of Deanston Distillery Malt whisky and a weekend pass to this years festival, to be held in Stirling from September 19th – 21st.

The winning story will also be published as an ebook short by Bloody Scotland.

We invite writers to from anywhere in the world to demonstrate their skill in short-story writing by entering a story, for a chance to win a brilliant prize and be recognised as an exciting emerging talent in the crime genre.

We’re seeking exceptional crime short stories based on the theme of ‘ESCAPE’.  

Stories should be a maximum of 3,000 words and must be submitted by midnight on 31st July 2014. There is an entry fee of £10 to cover the administration of the competition.

A prestigious judging panel comprising representatives from the University of Stirling and crime writers Alex Gray, Craig Robertson and Gordon Brown, will judge the entries and announce a shortlist.  This shortlist will then be open for a public vote on the Bloody Scotland website

Further information on entering, including additional details for non UK entries can be found here

It’s Dark & Stormy Down in Brighton

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Coming hot on the heels of CrimeFest and making sure you’ll be in the mood for Crime Story, it’s shaping up to be an A-May-zing May, with a second new Crime festival being announced in the last week, making for three weekends packed with all your crime fiction favourites.

Being launched as part of the larger Brighton Festival which runs from the 3rd to the 25th May, the Dark & Stormy Festival runs over three days from the 23rd to the 25th, and aims to bring you the best of all things crime related.

Dark & Stormy is a brand new UK crime festival, serving up a wicked selection of book, film, music & theatre events. We launch in May 2014, in partnership with Brighton Festival, Brighton Fringe, and Dukes at Komedia, to celebrate and promote this massively popular genre, bringing its fans, creators and stars together for one criminally good and unforgettable weekend.

Our aim is to appeal, not only to the legions of readers who keep crime writers at the top of the international bestseller lists, but also to the huge audiences who flock to watch The Killing and Breaking Bad on TV, Kick Ass and James Bond at the cinema, Max Payne and Grand Theft Auto on their PlayStations, and The Perfect Murder and Emil and the Detectives in the West End.

Sounds like another fantastic opportunity to celebrate crime fiction. So, grab your diaries and blot out this and the following weekends because there’s an unbelievable amount of criminal activity to be shared in.

CrimeFest – May 15th – 18th

Dark and Stormy – May 23rd  – 25th

and

Crime Story – May 31st – June 1st.

New Festival! Welcome to the calendar Crime Story

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Not content with announcing a fabulous competition for aspiring Northern crime writers last week, New Writing North in conjunction with Northumbria University has just launched CrimeStory, a new crime fiction festival to run at their campus in the heart of Newcastle-Upon-Tyne.

CrimeStory will run over the weekend of Saturday 31st May & Sunday 1st June 2014, and in the manner of all the best crime fiction, it comes with a delicious twist on the usual festival idea.

The weekend will focus on a fictional murder that we’ve commissioned from best-selling crime novelist Ann Cleeves in which a woman finds her foster-son dead in a locked room, a blood-splattered picture of an enigmatic woman on the wall and the dubious landlord nowhere to be found. The killer? Well, that’s up to the Crime Story participants

Crime Story will take place on 31 May-1 June and a host of top crime writers, criminologists, lawyers, police and forensics experts will walk attendees through the investigation, trial and punishment of the crime. There will be opportunities to participate in the digital autopsy of a computer, find out about ‘life inside’ from Guardian columnist Erwin James or listen to novelist Louise Welsh talking to former Observer crime fiction critic Peter Guttridge.

If it shapes up to be as interactive as it sounds, it will certainly be a welcome addition to the crime calendar.

 “In Crime Story writers will have the chance to find out from experts and practitioners how the criminal justice system really works. A young man has been found dead in his flat.  What happens next is down to the authors, academics and forensic scientists who’ll be exploring the scene.  CRIME STORY will be great opportunity for the writers of crime fiction to meet the experts who work in and research this field.”

– Ann Cleeves

Early Bird booking rates of £99 for adults, with a £10 discount for students are available until the 14th March. You can book your tickets here