If you've not been to BeaconLit before and would like a taste of who takes part, here are the profiles of the fabulous array of participants in BeaconLit 2017 on 8 July 2017.
Morgen Bailey is a writing-related blogger, freelance editor, speaker, and judge for various competitions including the H.E. Bates, BBC Radio 2 500-word, NLG, and RONE. The author of several flash fiction and short story collections, crime and chick lit novels, writer’s block workbooks, and writing-related articles, Morgen teaches creative writing across Northamptonshire (and beyond) including sixteen courses for NCC Adult Learning and is taught at Crime & Publishment 2017 with Lin Anderson and Paul Finch. Morgen is the former Chair of two writing groups, and a British Red Cross volunteer dealing with their donated books.
Steph Broadribb is an alumni of the MA Creative Writing at City University London, and trained as a bounty hunter in California. As her alter ego - Crime Thriller Girl - she blogs about crime fiction. Her debut novel, Deep Down Dead, is the first book in the Lori Anderson series. It's a breathtakingly fast-paced, hard-boiled and heart-breaking action thriller. Deep Down Dead was published in eBook on 15 October 2016 and paperback on 5 January 2017 from Orenda Books.
Adina is one of the most recognisable faces on BBC South Today, reporting and presenting news. In the last 12 months she has spent time in Kenya, producing a series of special reports about an Oxfordshire charity helping orphans. Adina also travelled to Calais and Dunkirk in March 2016 to meet migrants living in the ‘jungle’. She’s been a Journalist for 10 years, starting her career in commercial radio and then going on to work for Radio 1 Newsbeat. At 25, she made her TV debut co-hosting the BBC Two documentary series 'Revealed' and has also presented documentaries for BBC Learning. Adina grew up in Gloucester and has a BA Hons in English Literature from Cardiff University, where she also did her Postgraduate Diploma in Broadcast Journalism. In her spare time, Adina plays and umpires regional netball and enjoys keeping fit.
Rowan Coleman is the Sunday Times bestselling author of The Memory Book and We Are All Made of Stars. She lives in Hertfordshire with her large family and two dogs. Her latest novel The Summer Of Impossible Things is an epic story about time travel, courage, sacrifice and the power of love.
With more than a million books sold to date, Adam Croft is one of the most successful independently published authors in the world, and one of the biggest selling authors of the past year. Following his 2015 worldwide bestseller Her Last Tomorrow, his psychological thrillers were bought by Thomas & Mercer, an imprint of Amazon Publishing. Prior to the Amazon deal, Her Last Tomorrow sold more than 150,000 copies across all platforms and became one of the bestselling books of the year, reaching the top 10 in the overall Amazon Kindle chart and peaking at number 12 in the combined paperback fiction and non-fiction chart. His Knight & Culverhouse crime thriller series has sold more than 250,000 copies worldwide, with his Kempston Hardwick mystery books being adapted as audio plays. In February 2017, Only The Truth became a worldwide bestseller, reaching storewide number 1 at both Amazon US and Amazon UK. Adam has been featured on BBC television, BBC Radio 4, BBC Radio 5 Live, the BBC World Service, The Guardian, The Huffington Post and The Bookseller.
Harriet Cummings is a freelance writer with a background in history of art and gender studies. She enjoys writing scripts and has had work performed at Edinburgh Fringe Festival, as well as independent venues around London. While studying at Faber Academy she threw herself into her first novel and hasn’t looked back since. She lives in Leamington Spa with her husband and springer spaniel. We All Begin As Strangers is her debut novel.
Hugh Fraser is perhaps best known for playing Captain Hastings in the television series “Agatha Christie’s Poirot” and appearing as the Duke of Wellington in “Sharpe”. Other TV work has included “Edge of Darkness”, “Edward and Mrs Simpson” and Alan Bennett’s “The Insurance Man”. Amongst his film credits are roles in Patriot Games, The Draughstman’s Contract, 101 Dalmatians, Clint Eastwood’s Firefox and The Man in the Mask. In the theatre he has appeared at the Royal Court in “Cloud Nine”, “Traps” and “The Genius”, at the Lyric Theatre in “Filumena”, at Wyndhams Theatre in David Hare’s “Teeth’n’ Smiles” and in various roles with the Royal Shakespeare Company. He is an accomplished musician who co-wrote the theme tune to the popular children’s television series “Rainbow”. His debut novel Harm was published in 2015 by Urbane Publications. Its sequel Threat was released in summer 2016 and the latest in the Rina Walker series, Malice is scheduled for June 2017.
Jean Fullerton was born in East London and a retired district nurse and university lecturer. In 2006 she won the Harry Bowling Prize for her novel No Cure for Love and signed with Laura Longrigg at MBA Literary Agents the same year. She has published two East London series with Orion one set in the mid-1800s and the most recent featuring pre-NHS district nurses Mille Sullivan and Connie Byrne in the years following WW2. She has recently moved to Corvus, part of Atlantic Publishing and, Pocketful of Dreams the first of her new East London series featuring the Brogan family during the dark days of WW2 . She is also a regular writing workshop leader at the Romantic Novelist Association and the Historical Novel Society conferences. She has been shortlisted and won several awards and is married to a minister in the Church of England with a parish in Bedford.
DEBORAH M HODGETTS
Deborah M. Hodgetts was born in Staffordshire, England. She now lives in Buckinghamshire, with her family who are all equally creative and talented. Deborah is an established poet, Young Adult, New Adult writer/author, biographer and screenwriter. Her newest title, A Universe of Love, is now available on Amazon and Blurb. This poetry collection is punctuated with beautiful illustrations by Stewart Clough and poetry by Deborah M. Hodgetts that will melt your heart. Also due to be released in 2017 are: The Curtain Twitchers of Oakley Place, a Young Adult/New Adult novel; and You Should Have Been Here Yesterday, a biography of ex-BBC cameraman Tony Jacobs; from his early years as a projectionist at the Dominion Cinema through to his time filming the following historic events: Zeebrugge Ferry Disaster, Funeral of Kim Philby, Ethiopia, Bhopal and many more stories. When Deborah is not writing she is also a professional photographer, greetings card designer and creative in her own right. She has an online shop on Etsy called the 'Poetic Angel'. Deborah was also a local news correspondent, and Freelance Photographer of events for the Leighton Buzzard Observer until January 2017.
Christina Jones, the only child of a schoolteacher and a circus clown, has been writing all her life. As well as writing romantic comedy novels, she contributes short stories and articles to many national magazines and newspapers. She has written 21 romantic comedy novels and has won several awards for her writing: Going the Distance was a WH Smith Fresh Talent Winner; Nothing to Lose was shortlisted and runner-up for the Thumping Good Read Award with film and television rights sold; Heaven Sent was short listed in The Melissa Nathan Comedy Romance Awards and won a Category Award; Love Potions won the Pure Passion Award; The Way to a Woman’s Heart was short-listed for the Rom-Com of the Year; and An Enormously English Monsoon Wedding won The Reviewer’s Choice Award. She has also written and/or contributed to 11 e-book-only novellas/short stories/compilations. Her latest novel – Only One Woman – will be published in May 2017, followed by Marigold’s Magical Mystery Tour in November 2017. After years of travelling, she now lives in rural Oxfordshire with her husband and several rescued cats.
Hywela Lyn lives on the Buckinghamsire/Bedfordshire border with her husband Dave, although she was born and spent most of her adult life in rural Wales, whose rugged landscapes inspired much of her writing. She is published by the American publisher The Wild Rose Press and her latest novel is Beloved Enemy, the third of a Science Fiction Romance Trilogy (The Destiny Trilogy) which has been shortlisted for the Romantic Novelists' Association's Paranormal or Speculative Romance Novel Award 2017. Although most of her writing tends to be futuristic, the worlds she creates are usually untainted by crowded cities and technology, embracing the beauty and wildness of nature. Her characters often have to fight the elements and the terrain itself. Her heroes are strong and courageous, but chivalrous and honourable - and of course, handsome and hunky. Her heroines are also strong and courageous, but still retain their femininity! However difficult the journey, love will always win in the end. She is a member of The Romantic Novelists' Association (UK) and Chiltern Writers, her local writing group. A keen animal lover, she has two horses, a 'feral' stable cat, and a rescued terrier, who manages to twist her round his little paw. When she is not writing, she can usually be found enjoying the outdoors with the horses and dog, reading - or just eating chocolate!
BeaconLit founder Dave Sivers moonlighted as a bookmaker’s clerk and a nightclub bouncer during his civil service career, and he is now an author and freelance writer. His books include the popular Archer and Baines crime series set in Aylesbury Vale - the latest, The Blood That Binds, was published in April 2017. His short fiction has earned prizes and publication and his work has also appeared in Take a Break, Buckinghamshire Countryside and Four Shires. He has been a regular contributor to The Bucks Herald and the Leighton Buzzard Observer. Dave also writes plays and other material for the amateur stage. He lives in Buckinghamshire with his wife.
As a freelance writer, Sandra Smith’s commissions cover both the national and regional magazine market. She is a feature writer for Buckinghamshire Life for whom she has interviewed people as diverse as politicians, Olympic athletes, actors, entrepreneurs and charity workers. She also writes a humorous column (Disparate Housewives) for the same magazine. Her artist profiles appear each month in Hertfordshire Life and Hampshire Life and she contributes Creative Vale and Healthy Vale columns to Vale Life. As well as writing exhibition reviews for The Lady, articles have been commissioned by Country Life, Country Living, Landscape, writing journals and a variety of other magazines. Opinions and Pearls, a blog by her alter ego, Lady Margaret Gosworthy-Pringle, is regularly published on Sandra’s website. The Creative Writing classes she runs cater for small groups and individuals. Sandra has given creative writing talks and run workshops at a number of literary festivals, been interviewed on BBC Radio Oxford and BBC Three Counties Radio and is a past Chairman of Chiltern Writers. In addition, she has been involved in the organisation of literary festivals and short story competitions and has a number of live In Conversation interviews to her credit.
Publisher Karen Sullivan is the owner of Orenda Books and was a was a Bookseller Rising Star for 2016 at the IPG Awards, where Orenda was shortlisted for the Nick Robinson Newcomer Award. Orenda Books is a new independent publisher specialising in literary fiction, with a heavy emphasis on crime thrillers, about half in translation. Authors include Amanda Jennings, Ragnar Jonasson, Gunnar Staalesen and Michael J. Malone, all of whom have had number-one kindle bestsellers and gone on to shortlist for and win a variety of awards.
Clare Swatman has been a writer and journalist for more years than she cares to remember. In that time she has written for many women’s magazines including Take a Break, Bella and Best, and also edits a local magazine in her home town of Berkhamsted, Hertfordshire where she lives with her husband and two boys. Clare was born in 1975 in Essex, but she doesn’t think it’s rubbed off on her too much. She studied French and Spanish in Newcastle but can hardly speak a word these days, to her shame. She also completed a post-graduate magazine journalism course with PMA Media Training. Her debut novel, Before You Go, published by Pan Macmillan, and was released in the UK in February 2017, in time for Valentine’s Day. Translation rights have also been sold in Germany, France, Italy, Slovakia, Norway, Israel, Netherlands, Russia, Brazil, China, Czech Republic, Poland, Turkey and Denmark. She’s currently working on her second novel, and enjoying every minute.