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SPECIAL GUEST NORTHERN HIGHLIGHT - BECKY SWAIN

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SPECIAL GUEST NORTHERN HIGHLIGHT Becky Swain, Director of Manchester Poetry Library, Manchester Metropolitan University Can you tell us about the North West’s first public poetry library?  Well, the power of poetry and libraries combined. I always have to take a moment to breathe in and out when I think of the infinite possibilities.  Manchester Poetry Library is home to a poetry collection of over 10,000 titles and a year-round public programme. We have had such a positive response to creating the library. Working with people across and beyond the region, we want to ensure that poetry from over 200 of Manchester’s community languages is represented within the collection. It will be open to everyone, with visitors able to enjoy and borrow from the collection of contemporary poetry; written, spoken and on film. If you think of anything that you feel we ought to have in our collection, then let us know. Although we are not able to open the physical doors to the library until Co

Northern Highlight - Marie Basting

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NORTHERN HIGHLIGHT Marie Basting     Why did you become a writer? I’ve always loved writing but I let go of that dream when, at fifteen, I was told by a careers advisor that "girls like me" don’t become writers. I rallied against this at first but, after attending the Guardian Student Media Awards, I decided she was right... working class girls like me didn’t move in those circles.  It was only with a bit of life experience, I realised just how wrong that careers advisor was to put children in boxes and essentially close the lid. After becoming a mum, I felt I owed it to my son to show him that girls like me and boys like him can do anything they want. I set to writing Princess BMX. Although I didn’t realise it when I was drafting the story, defying limits and smashing stereotypes are key themes of the book.  Cover illustration - Flavia Sorrentino. Cover Design - Studio Helen . Images - Martyn Ode St Oswalds Tell us about where you live. I live in Chorlton in South Manches

Children's Books North Mentor Scheme

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  CHILDREN'S BOOKS NORTH 2021 MENTOR SCHEME  We are delighted to be launching our first Children's Books North Mentor Scheme. One of CBN’s aims is to increase regional diversity in the children’s book industry. There is so much talent that we want to encourage, nurture and retain here, so CBN is launching a mentor scheme for would-be children’s book industry professionals living in the North of England and Scotland. The co-founders of CBN – Emma, Liz and Tilda – are offering to be mentors each year, for  three aspiring publishing professionals looking to beginning a career working within a UK publisher. Mentoring will work on a 1:1 basis. Applications are open to anyone interested in beginning a career in publishing.  No previous experience is needed.  What is involved? An introductory 1-hour meeting (face-to-face or via Zoom, Teams, etc.) f ollowed by four 1-hour meetings focused on: Improving your CV & social media profile The importance of networking Interview & as

Northern Highlight - Hiba Noor Khan

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NORTHERN HIGHLIGHT HIBA NOOR KHAN Why did you become a writer? I've always wanted to be a pirate, explorer, baker, oceanographer, and many more, but instead somehow ended up studying engineering and teaching Physics! I think the only solution to desperately wanting to lead multiple lives - that many writers will identify with - is to write and of course read. I've loved words, stories and books for as long as I can remember, and writing is the way I process the world around me and my responses to it. Despite it having been a sort of lifeblood for me since childhood, dabbling in freelance journalism and dreaming about publishing a novel, somehow I never fully envisaged myself as a writer. In 2018, I was lucky enough to get a commission to write for Penguin's Extraordinary Lives series and I so enjoyed the entire process and experience, it acted as the catalyst and the push for me to seriously consider doing more of what I love. That opportunity made what had barely been

SPECIAL GUEST NORTHERN HIGHLIGHT - Golden Egg North

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SPECIAL GUEST NORTHERN HIGHLIGHT Tilda Johnson,  The Golden Egg Academy North When was the  Golden   Egg  Academy  North  set up and why?  When I moved to Manchester the Golden Egg Academy had been in business for around five years, and I was well aware of it and some of the writers who had reached publication after studying with Golden Egg. But at that point (in 2017) all workshops and editorials took place in London or the SW (at Imogen's kitchen table initially!), and 'Eggs' from further away had to organise travel and sometimes accommodation. Imogen was really keen to set up a Northern hub, so once we got in touch Golden Egg North came about fairly swiftly!  There was a really positive response when I set up the first regional branch, in Manchester, and we've since opened further branches for Wales & the SW, Brighton and Scotland. Writing and developing a novel is a hugely personal experience, so many writers (and editors!) are keen to meet and connect in person

Northern Highlight - Joan Lennon

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  NORTHERN HIGHLIGHT Joan Lennon Why did you become a writer?    I think it was inevitable. I love words – love stories – love everything to do with words and stories, like movies and poetry and eavesdropping and people watching and wondering why?  Making my own stories out of all that was just the logical next step, which started when I was about 8. It took me another 40 or so years before I became a writer full time, but it was always on the back burner. Tell us about where you live.    I live in the top two floors of a Victorian house, in a village overlooking the River Tay, in the flamboyantly-named Kingdom of Fife. Where do you write?    I have a desk in my bedroom in the eaves. And a flat roof I can climb out onto. What for you is the ‘spirit of the North’?    I’m from Canada, though I’ve lived most of my adult life in Scotland, so I have two countries’ worth of ‘North’ in me. There are similarities between them, not just because Canada has received so many Scots over the years (