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The Write Chat: Crafting Characters

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Katie Hale talks to novelists Molly Aitken and Yvonne Battle-Felton, about how we create characters who are both memorable and lifelike.

About this Event

Join novelists Katie Hale, Molly Aitken & Yvonne Battle-Felton for an in-depth chat about character, motivation, and the craft of writing.

When it comes to building a fictional person, where do you begin? How do you create a character so real and so memorable, that they stay with a reader long after they've turned the final page of the book?

All three writers have written novels which are multi-generational, and which explore how characters came to be the way they are. In this informal chat, Katie Hale will talk to Molly Aitken & Yvonne Battle-Felton about their techniques for creating and crafting characters, and about how those characters came to shape the stories they wanted to write.

Whether you're a writer, a reader, or someone with a general interest in the creative process, we'd love to have you there. Don't forget to bring your own tipple of choice (coffee or cocktails - either works for us)!

Yvonne Battle-Felton, author of Remembered, is an American writer living in the UK. Her writing has been published in literary journals and anthologies. Remembered, was longlisted for the Women’s Prize for Fiction (2019) and shortlisted for the Jhalak Prize (2020). Winner of a Northern Writers Award in fiction (2017), Yvonne was shortlisted for the Words and Women Competition (2017), the Sunderland University Waterstones SunStory Award in 2018, and awarded a Society of Author’s Foundation Grant for Remembered in 2018. She was commended for children’s writing in the Faber Andlyn BAME (FAB) Prize (2017) and has three titles in Penguin Random House’s The Ladybird Tales of Superheroes and three in The Ladybird Tales of Crowns and Thrones. Yvonne has a PhD in Creative Writing from Lancaster University and is a 2019 British Library Eccles Centre Visiting Fellow, and Lecturer in Creative Writing and Creative Industries at Sheffield Hallam University.

Molly Aitken was born in Scotland in 1991 and brought up in Ireland. She studied Literature and Classics at Galway University and has an MA in Creative Writing from Bath Spa. She won the Janklow and Nesbit Prize for an early draft of her first novel. The Island Child was published by Canongate in January 2020. She has short stories published with Comma Press and Irish Imbas.

Katie Hale is a poet & novelist, based in Cumbria. Her debut novel, My Name is Monster, was shortlisted for the Kitschies Golden Tentacle Award, and has been translated into multiple languages, and she is the author of two poetry pamphlets: Breaking the Surface and Assembly Instructions, which won the Munster Chapbook Prize. She is a former MacDowell Fellow and has completed a number of international residencies. She has also featured on national television and radio, including programmes such as Radio 4’s Open Book and Front Row, and has created commissioned work for the National Trust, the Barbican Centre, and the BBC Contains Strong Language poetry festival.

Cost: £5

(For each talk, there are 3 free places available for those who would otherwise be unable to attend. Drop me a message if you'd like one of these places.)

The Write Chat is a series of monthly conversations with different writers, running online throughout 2021.

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