Belfast Book Festival
Come along to this lively celebration of feelgood fiction, featuring authors Anne Booth (Small Miracles) and Sheena Wilkinson (Mrs. Hart’s Marriage Bureau) in conversation with Sue Leonard (Whispering Hope, An Act of Love).
They will discuss writing for both adults and younger readers, what differences they found in writing those forms, the strong women that define their work, and the necessity of stories that make you feel good in today’s world.
Anne Booth has had all sorts of jobs, including washing up in a restaurant, working as a tour guide in a haunted almshouse, bookselling, teaching English in Italy, lecturing at university and being a long-term carer for her elderly parents. She has published 23 children's books and Small Miracles is her first novel for adults. All her childhood and teenage years she wanted to be a nun, and although she has ended up happily married with four children, she still feels inspired by the many kind nuns and religious Sisters she has met.
One of Ireland's most acclaimed writers for young people, the multi-award-winning Sheena Wilkinson has just published her first adult novel. Mrs Hart's Marriage Bureau, described in The Irish Independent as 'riotously funny ... beautifully authentic ... a gem' is a witty romantic comedy set in the 1930s, about friendship, loneliness, and the unexpected places where we find fulfilment. Sheena is an Arts Council of Northern Ireland Major Award holder, and teaches creative writing in settings ranging from prisons to universities. When she's not writing, she is usually singing or walking in a forest with a lazy greyhound and a naughty terrier.
A journalist and ghost-writer, Sue Leonard has made her living from writing for the past 25 years. She has co-written 12 books, including 2 number one bestsellers – An Act of Love, with Marie Fleming, and Whispering Hope, the true story of the Magdalene Women. A former columnist with the Evening Herald, Books Ireland, and others, she now writes the Beginner’s Pluck Book column for the Irish Examiner. She has interviewed well over 1,000 authors, including 11 winners of the Man Booker Prize. Born in Oxford, she lives in County Wicklow with her husband, and black Labrador.