Events and Meetings in 2014-2015

The schedule of speakers was:

Monday 15th September 2014: The speaker was Andrew Ladd, author of What Ends, set in a Scottish island community.
Monday 17th November 2014: The speaker was Carys Bray, author of A Song for Issy Bradley.
Monday 12th January 2015: long listing meeting; The speaker was Mason Cross, author of The Killing Season.
Monday 23rd March 2015: short listing meeting; The speaker was Jane Stubbs, author of Thornfield Hall, a new take on Jane Eyre.
Monday 29th June 2015: the voting meeting; The speaker was Paul Lavin, Festivals Manager of Chester Performs.

Meetings

All meetings are held in Waverton Community Primary School at 7.30pm

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At the first meeting of 2014-15, in September, Andrew Ladd gave a fascinating talk about the origins of What Ends. He described how a real visit to an island similar to his fictional Hebridean isle evoked coincidences stranger than fiction. Some pictures of Andrew at the well attended meeting follow:

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At the second meeting in November, Carys Bray described her upbringing as a Mormon which stimulated her novel A Song for Issy Bradley. A large audience was entranced by Carys' story.

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At the third meeting in January, Mason Cross - a Glaswegian - spoke about his novel The Killing Season, set in and around Chicago. The audience of more than 60 readers heard about Mason's life as a 500-words-a-day writer (in between pizza deliveries).

Mason Cross talking to a reader.

Mason Cross speaking

Mason with his first book

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At the fourth meeting, in March 2015, Jane Stubbs - author of Thornfield Hall - spoke about her experiences writing about a well-known subject, Jane Eyre. Thornfield Hall is set "below stairs" (or should we say "in the attic") of Mr Rochester's house and is narrated by the housekeeper Alice Fairfax.

Images of Jane Stubbs.

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The final meeting of 2014/15, at which the vote was counted, was addressed by Paul Lavin, who gave us a preview of speakers at the Chester Literature Festival.

As is now customary, each shortlisted book was championed by a reader, who then collected the votes for that book.

Images from the voting meeting.

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Award Dinner 2014

The 2014 eleventh award dinner was held at Eaton Golf Club, Waverton, on 10th October 2014. The evening was hosted by Councillor Stuart Parker and the prize was presented by Richard Taylor of NNL, the main sponsors of the Award. Gavin Extence spoke about the experience of having his first novel published and gave a short reading from his second novel. Gavin then responded to many questions about the writing of The Universe versus Alex Woods, and revealed that his back-up career - should writing fail him - was to manage a Subway sandwich outlet. The dinner was enlivened by the customary table quiz, set this year by Gwen Connolly on themes relating to Alex Woods. Some pictures of the event, taken by David Evans, follow.

Gavin and Richard with the trophy.

Gavin with Gwen and Wendy.

Stuart Parker with Gavin's book

Gavin answering questions from diners

Peter reading out the quiz answers.

Wendy distributing prizes to the winning table.

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