Marcus Sedgwick : Edinburgh International Book Festival

Author Marcus Sedgwick discusses his writing process, his illustration work and collaboration. His work spans across many genres, and he’s written titles for children, teenagers and adults. Sedgwick’s work has been awarded the Printz Award, the Booktrust Teenage Prize and the Blue Peter Award, as well as being nominated for the Carnegie Medal and the Edgar Allan Poe Award.

Simon Van Booy : Everything Beautiful Began After

Simon Van Booy’s book Everything Beautiful Began After centres around three individuals who meet in Athens after going to the city to find themselves.

Simon Van Booy is a Brooklyn based writer whose work includes The Secret Lives of People in Love, Love Begins in Winter (winner of the Frank O’Connor International Short Story Award) and the novel, Everything Beautiful Began After. His latest novel is The Illusion of Separateness.


Raja Shehadeh : Edinburgh International Book Festival 2014

Raja Shehadeh talks to WriterStories TV about his writing, and the history of Israel and Palestine at this year’s Edinburgh International Book Festival.

Raja Shehadeh is a Palestinian lawyer, novelist and political activist. He is a founder of the human rights organisation Al-Haq, an affiliate of the International Commission of Jurists and the author of several books about international law, human rights and the Middle East. In 2008 he was awarded the Orwell prize for political writing for his book, Palestinian Walks.

Fred D’Aguiar : The Children of Paradise

Writer and poet Fred D’Aguiar explores the Jonestown massacre through a child’s eyes in his new book, The Children of Paradise. The book centres around Joyce and her young daughter, Trina, who are members of a utopian community ruled by a charismatic leader.

Fred D’Aguiar is a poet and author, whose work has been translated into many languages. His first novel, The Longest Memory, won the Whitbread First Novel Award and was made into a film by Channel 4 (UK). A number of essays have appeared in Harper’s, Wasafiri, Callaloo, Best American Essays and elsewhere. His play A Jamaican Airman Foresees His Death, produced at Royal Court Theatre Upstairs in 1991.

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Lauren Owen : The Quick

Writer Lauren Owen presents her debut novel The Quick, a story of a brother and sister who become entwined in a dark and mysterious sector of Victorian London society, at this year’s Edinburgh International Book Festival.

Lauren Owen grew up in the grounds of a boarding school in Yorkshire, and her first attempts at writing as a teenager were Harry Potter fan fiction. She is a graduate of St Hilda’s, Oxford, holds an MA in Victorian Literature, is completing a PhD on Gothic writing and fan culture, and is the recipient of the UEA creative-writing programme’s prestigious Curtis Brown Prize.

Kenneth Calman : A Doctor’s Line

Sir Kenneth Calman discusses his book A Doctor’s Line, which is a compilation of poetry and prose from over 700 years, exploring the developing relationship between doctors and patients.

Sir Kenneth Calman is currently the Chancellor of University of Glasgow, but he began his career in medicine, specialising in cancer research, and later moving into public health as the Chief Medical Officer in Scotland and London.


Nicole Brandon : The Turing Test

Nicole Brandon introduces her short story, The Turing Test, which she read at Story Shop as part of this year’s Edinburgh International Book Festival. The Turing Test is an adaptation of the Greek myth Pygmalion, a tale about a sculptor who falls in love with the sculpture he carved, but takes its name from Alan Turing’s experiment which tested the ability of artificial intelligence to exhibit intelligent behaviour.

Hear Nicole’s reading here

Charlie Adlard : Edinburgh International Book Festival 2014

Charlie Adlard speaks to Phoebe Cottam about his career in the comic book industry, from working on titles such as The X-Files and The Walking Dead, to his experiences of self publishing before the digital era.

Charlie Adlard has been a comic book artist for over 20 years, and has worked on various titles and projects in that time. His work for The Walking Dead, a story about a group of disparate people who have come together in the midst of a zombie apocalypse, has received many awards.


Sara Sheridan : England Expects

Scottish author Sara Sheridan discusses her writing career so far, her interest in history, and the research methods she employs when working on her novels, at this year’s Edinburgh International Book Festival.

Sara Sheridan was born in Edinburgh, and attended an all girls school, which had wonderful English and History teachers. This started Sheridan’s lifelong interest in the subjects, leading on to study English at Trinity College, Dublin. After working in Ireland for a bit, Sheridan returned to Scotland, and eventually became a writer, publishing several books, including her Mirabelle Bevan series, about a female detective who solves cases in the 50s.


John Gordon Sinclair : Blood Whispers

Actor turned writer John Gordon Sinclair, introduces his second novel crime thriller Blood Whispers, at this year’s Edinburgh International Book Festival. The second in a planned trilogy of novels sees lawyer Keira Lynch defending Albanian prostitute Kaltrina Dervishi, who is on the run from a Serbian gang intent on silencing her.

John Gordon Sinclair is probably best known for his role as awkward teenager in Gregory’s Girl, which he shot when he was 19. Having continuously worked in film, tv and theatre since then, Sinclair decided to give writing a shot. His debut Seventy Times Seven came out in 2012, and revolved around two Republican brothers from Belfast caught up in the Troubles.

Victoria Hendry : A Capital Union

Writer Victoria Hendry introduces her debut novel, A Capital Union, which taps into the independence debate as newly-wed Agnes becomes embroiled in Scottish nationalist politics of 1942.

Victoria Hendry has worked in the London Museum of Jewish Life and Kirkcaldy Museum and Art Gallery, both of which stimulated her appetite for the stories behind the collections. She has an MSc in Creative Writing from Edinburgh University and was shortlisted for the Society of Women Writers and Journalists International Life Writing Prize in 2012.

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Lauren Beukes : Broken Monsters

Errol Rivera talks to author Lauren Beukes about her writing, choosing genres and the comic and graphic novel’s place within a festival, at this year’s Edinburgh International Book Festival.

Lauren Beukes is an award-winning, best-selling novelist who also writes comics, screenplays, TV shows and occasionally journalism. She is the author of Broken Monsters, The Shining Girls, Zoo City, Moxyland, Maverick: Extraordinary Women From South Africa’s Past and the graphic novel, Fairest: The Hidden Kingdom with Inaki Miranda.


Emma Jane Unsworth : Animals

Ali Millar talks to author Emma Jane Unsworth, who presents her second novel, Animals, which focuses on best friends Laura and Tyler who live together, angrily philosophising and leading each other astray in the pubs and flats of Manchester. Things are set to change as Laura is engaged to teetotal Jim, with the wedding just months away. Tyler becomes hell-bent on sabotaging her friend’s plans for a different life.

Emma Jane Unsworth’s first novel Hungry, the Stars and Everything (Hidden Gem) won a Society of Authors Betty Trask Award and was shortlisted for the Portico Prize 2012. Her short story ‘I Arrive First’ was published in The Best British Short Stories 2012 (Salt). She has worked as a journalist, a columnist for The Big Issue, and a barmaid. Her second novel Animals is out now.


Louise Welsh : A Lovely Way To Burn

Ali Millar talks to Scottish writer Louise Welsh about her book ‘A Lovely Way To Burn’, in which Welsh explores the physical and political implications of a worldwide pandemic.

Louise Welsh is the author of six novels: The Cutting Room (2002), Tamburlaine Must Die (2004), The Bullet Trick (2006), Naming the Bones (2010) The Girl on the Stairs (2012) and A Lovely Way to Burn (20th March 2014). She’s also produced many short stories and articles and written for radio and the stage including a libretto for opera. Louise was writer in residence for The University of Glasgow and Glasgow School of Art from Nov 2010 until April 2012.

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Otto de Kat : News From Berlin

Writer Otto de Kat talks to Catriona O’Sullivan about his book News From Berlin, and the importance of thorough research for characters and setting in a historical novel, at this year’s Edinburgh International Book Festival. The story centres around a Dutch diplomat, Oscar Verschuur, who finds himself in neutral Switzerland. His family is spread across Europe, his wife Kate in London and their daughter Emma living in Berlin with her husband Carl, a ‘good’ German who works at the ministry of foreign affairs. The novel alternates between these three perspectives.

Otto de Kat is the pseudonym of retired publisher Jan Geurt Gaarlandt (b. 1946). He published his first novel, Man in de verte (The Figure in the Distance), in 1998, followed in 2004 by De inscheper (Man on the Move) and in 2008 by Julia. Each of these novels is set in the 1930s and 1940s and each was favourably received and nominated for various literary prizes. De Kat has received particular praise for his observant, hushed style. He creates a rather detached atmosphere in which people travel the world without ever finding what they are looking for or escaping their fate.

Jade Huang : Misa-Lisin

Jade Huang introduces the story behind Misa-Lisin. This spectacular performance combines dancing, singing and story telling in an energetic act of humanity and the motherland. Misa Lisin represents ceremonies from tribes across Taiwan.

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Alexandra Kazazou and Matej Matejka : Charmolypi

Alexandra Kazazou and Matej Matejka introduce their show Charmolypi, which is currently on at Summerhall. The performance is a sort of map charting the thoughts of a woman who struggles with the uncertainty of what is a dream and what is her failure to understand herself in the real world. The Greek word charmolypi encompasses the duality at the root of human experience. Loosely translated, it means “bittersweet” or “joyful sorrow”. On a more earthly level, elderly people are often said to have charmolypi because of their accumulation of experience.

Charmolypi is on at 18.20, Cairns Lecture Theatre, Summerhall, until the 24th August 2014. Find out more at and

Alister Lownie and Katherina Radeva : Near Gone

Alister Lownie and Katherina Radeva introduce their performance Near Gone. Two performers have a difficult story to tell. They come on stage and launch themselves into an hour long attempt to put into words the utterly unspeakable. Delivered in English and Bulgarian, with pounding gypsy- inspired music, this beautiful performance fills an empty space with two performers, hundreds of fresh flowers and a storm of emotion.

Near Gone is on at 12.30, in the Demonstration Room, Summerhall until the 23rd August 2014.

Peter Wilson : Duck, Death and the Tulip

Exploring the often difficult subjects of life and death, Duck, Death and the Tulip is a warm tale about the unlikely friendship between a duck and death. The play takes the audience on a journey through life with the use of mime, magic and puppets.

Duck, Death and the Tulip is on at 10.00am, in the Main Hall, Summerhall, until the 24th August 2014. Find out more at

Andrew Tsao : The Waste Land Sisters

Director Andrew Tsao brings to Summerhall a world premiere of his piece, The Waste Land Sisters, which combines the work of T.S Elliot and Chekov with puppetry and imaginative staging.

The Waste Land Sisters is on at 12.20, in the Anatomy Lecture Theatre, Summerhall, until the 24th August 2014. Find out more at

Tony Parsons : The Murder Bag

Catriona O’Sullivan talks to writer and broadcast journalist Tony Parsons as he presents his new book ‘The Murder Bag’, at this year’s Edinburgh International Book Festival.

Tony Parsons began his journalism career at the NME, writing about punk music. He then wrote for The Daily Telegraph and the Daily Mirror, whilst also guesting on shows such as The Late Show and Newsnight Review. He has been writing since the 80s, but it was his 1999 novel ‘Man and Boy’ that propelled his writing career.

Parsons’ new book is a crime thriller about the life of a former surveillance officer who transfers to the homicide squad after a slightly reckless yet successful assignment involving suicide bomber. Wolfe’s first case is a series of mysterious murders, which he must find out the link to.

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Keith Dumble : Story Shop

As part of the Edinburgh International Book Festival, Edinburgh City of Literature run a programme called Story Shop, which offers 17 up-and-coming authors the chance to do a 10 minute reading of their work. Writer Keith Dumble talks about his story, The Tale of The Inflatable Chimney Sweep, which was the result of an idea-generating task at his writing group.

See Keith Dumble at the Story Shop event, at Edinburgh International Book Festival, on the 25th August 2014.