Literary News

U-turn as PRH is fluckgungled by Dahl furore and line-ups announced for Virginia Festival of the Book and Newcastle Writers Festival

U-turn as PRH is fluckgungled by Dahl furore and line-ups announced for Virginia Festival of the Book and Newcastle Writers Festival

Festival News:

The 10th edition of the Newcastle Writers Festival is running on March 31st until April 2nd, this years’ schedule has a line-up of artists that includes Kristen Dunphy, Ailsa Piper, Alistair Rolls, Amy Lovat, Claire Albrecht, Judith Beveridge, Jackie Huggins, Nerds and Music and many others. Events and panels feature Wendy Whitely at a Literary Lunch, Jackie Hugging reflecting on identity and reconciliation speaking about her anthology “Sister Girl”, commemoration of the late poet Robert Adamson’s life and work, Writer and broadcaster Richard Fidler discussing The Book of Roads & Kingdoms, A poetry salon with Cassandra Atherton, Mohammad Awad, Robbie Coburn, Rico Craig, and many others, along with other evenings, sessions and music nights.


The Virginia Festival of the Book’s 29th edition is scheduled to be held from March 23-26, 2023, featuring a wide range of captivating presentations and discussions suitable for all age groups and interests. The festival is yet to reveal its full schedule, but the panels announced are more than interesting with a Romance Salon featuring Tracey Livesay, a Sci-Fi Salon with Lucinda Roy, poets Quan Barry, Lisa Russ Spaar and Meghan O’Rourke discussing their forays into prose, and many others. Poet Ross Gay and his book “The Book of Delights” will be the features of the festival’s partner, Jefferson-Madison Regional Library as part of their Same Page Community Read initiative, to explore this book, as well as his newest work, Inciting Joy with the audience at the Virginia Festival.


The Women’s Prize Trust is hosting the ultimate day festival for booklovers and storytellers on 13 Hune 2023. The event offers an incredible line-up of events, including talks, workshops, book clubs, and conversations with authors such as Anita Anand, Naomi Alderman, Ravinder Bhogal, Elizabeth Gilbert, Vick Hope, Nadiya Hussain, Louise Minchin, Kate Mosse, Anita Rani, Alex Scott, and Elif Shafak. The festival will also feature the six authors shortlisted for the 2023 Women’s Prize for Fiction, with more names and the full program to be revealed. In addition to the talks and workshops, there will be drop-in workshops run by female makers, 1-2-1 expert coaching sessions, and book-signing stations.


First Nations Australian artists and arts workers have been offered the chance to attend the Auckland Writers Festival in May by the Australia Council for the Arts, which is the national arts organization in Australia. The council is undergoing a name change to Creative Australia in response to a new national cultural policy, and a new entity called Writing Australia is being established within its framework.

Book News:

Penguin Random House has announced that it will publish unexpurgated versions of Roald Dahl’s children’s novels, following criticism of the cuts and rewrites that had been made in recent editions. Seventeen of Dahl’s books will  be published in their original form as “The Roald Dahl Classic Collection” later this year. The Roald Dahl Story Company had worked with Puffin to revise the texts, but the scale of the edits drew criticism from free-speech groups, authors including Salman Rushdie, the UK’s Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and the Queen Consort Camilla.  Dahl’s books have sold more than 300 million copies world-wide more

Camilla, Queen Consort, has launched her book club project as a charity called The Queen’s Reading Room, which aims to promote literacy and a love of literature around the world. The launch was attended by authors, literary figures, and representatives of literacy charities, including Dame Jacqueline Wilson, Booker Prize winner Ben Okri, and Richard Osman. The charity’s first literary festival, to take place on June 11, will feature speakers such as Dame Judi Dench and historian David Olusoga.

A sequel to the classic children’s book “How the Grinch Stole Christmas!” will be released on September 5th. The new book, titled “How the Grinch Lost Christmas!”, was written and illustrated by Alastair Heim and Aristides Ruiz.

The London Book Fair has announced the Author HQ events programme and Writers’ Summit conference line-up for 2023. These events offer authors valuable insights and practical tools from industry experts. The events will take place from April 18 to April 20 at Olympia London, and will feature bestselling authors Juno Dawson, Janice Hallett, Katy Brent, and Elle McNicholl, as well as representatives from various publishing and literary organizations.

The finalists for the Lukas Prize Project awards have been announced, with winners to be revealed on March 21st. The awards, named after author and investigative journalist J. Anthony Lukas, recognize outstanding works of narrative nonfiction on American political or social issues. Nominees for the J. Anthony Lukas Book Prize include “His Name is George Floyd,” “Under the Skin,” and “G-Man.” The Mark Lynton History Prize nominees include “The Grimkes,” “Indigenous Continent,” and “Last Call at the Hotel Imperial.”.

Juno Dawson have won the 2022 ALCS Educational Writers’ Award for her book “WHAT’S THE T?” which is a guide to all things trans and/or non-binary for young people aged 14+. The book was praised for being informative, appealing to a wide audience, and helping readers understand transgender and non-binary issues. Two runners-up were also announced, “MUSICAL TRUTH” and “THE PLACE FOR ME”, with the latter being produced in partnership with the Black Cultural Archives. The ALCS Educational Writers’ Award was established to celebrate educational writing that inspires creativity and builds up understanding of a subject beyond exam specifications.

The shortlist for the John Pollard Foundation International Poetry Prize 2023 has been revealed by the Trinity Oscar Wilde Centre. The prize, worth €10,000, is awarded annually for an exceptional first collection of poetry in English. The winner will be announced on May 3rd, 2023, and the shortlisted books are Some Integrity by Padraig Regan, Slide by Mark Pajak, Outlandish by Jo Clement, Quiet by Victoria Adukwei Bulley, Bless the Daughter Raised by a Voice in Her Head by Warsan Shire, and bandit country by James Conor Patterson. The judges were impressed by the range and diversity of the work submitted.

You can explore more content via the association’s website here and discuss topics in the forum with other member festivals here.