BridLit tickets went on sale last Friday and, not surprisingly, big names appearing at intimate venues sold out almost straight away.
Tickets for PJ Harvey and Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, who are at Sladers Yard, West Bay, were snapped up almost instantly.
Other events involving big names at bigger venues – such as Dame Sheila Hancock, actor Hugh Bonneville in conversation with Lord Fellowes, politician Lord Patten and bestselling author Maggie O’ Farrell, who are all appearing at The Electric Palace, Bridport – are also selling quickly.
Our friends at Bridport Tourist Information Centre have been working flat out to meet the demand.
For those disappointed at not getting to see PJ Harvey or Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, why not consider becoming a Friend of Bridport Literary Festival next year?
Becoming a Friend gives you an advance copy of the festival brochure, priority booking, free postal booking and no booking fee, regular Friends’ events including an annual party, a twice-yearly newsletter and an opportunity to get involved. And all for just £15 a year (or £30 for couples).
But there are plenty of other great writers on this year’s festival stage from 6 -12 November.Take a look at the brochure and see what takes your fancy.
My tips include Kit de Waal, who’ll be at the Electric Palace on Friday 11 November at 6.30pm, who will be talking to Lisa Blower about her memoir, Without Warning and Only Sometimes – Scenes from an Unpredictable Childhood.
Kit, the award-winning author of My Name is Leon, has been reading from the memoir for Radio 4. You can catch up via iPlayer here https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m001b3yn
In a household of opposites and extremes, and caught between three worlds, Irish, Caribbean and British in 1960s Birmingham, Kit and her siblings knew all the words to the best songs, caught sticklebacks in jam jars and braved hunger and hellfire until they could all escape. Without Warning and Only Sometimes is a story of an extraordinary childhood and how a girl who grew up in house where the Bible was the only book on offer, went on to discover a love of reading that inspires her to this day.
I’m also excited about Joanna Quinn coming to The Bull Hotel ballroom on Monday 7 November at 3.30pm.
I remember Joanna from her days as a reporter on the Dorset Echo and couldn’t be more thrilled at the fantastic response to her debut novel, The Whalebone Theatre, set on the Dorset coast against a backdrop of two world wars.
I recommend this beautifully written, immersive coming-of-age novel to local book groups – a great opportunity to read something wonderful and then meet the woman who wrote it.
Riding Out A Journey of Love, Loss and New Beginnings by Simon Parker is also very appealing. My big cycling days are long past (I once rode to the top of Mont -Ventoux in Provence) but Simon’s story of overcoming adversity on a 3,500-mile bike ride across Britain is an inspiration.
His talk at the Bull Ballroom on Sunday 6 November at 10.30am launches the festival.