Alison Pick is the author of the novel FAR TO GO, longlisted for the 2011 Man Booker Prize, and winner of the Canadian Jewish Book Award for fiction, and a memoir, BETWEEN GODS . She is also the author of two collections of poetry, and a novel, The Sweet Edge, all of which were published to wide acclaim. She lives in Toronto.
Andrea Levy was born in England to Jamaican parents who came to Britain in 1948. After attending writing workshops when she was in her mid-thirties, Levy began to write the novels that she, as a young woman, had always wanted to read – entertaining novels that reflect the experiences of black Britons, which look at Britain and its changing population and at the intimacies that bind British history with that of the Caribbean.
She has written six books, including SMALL ISLAND, which was the unique winner of both the Orange Prize for Fiction and the Whitbread book of the Year, in addition to the Commonwealth Writer’s Prize and the Orange Prize ‘Best of the Best’. Her most recent novel, THE LONG SONG, won the Walter Scott Prize and was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize.
Bernie McGill was born and raised in Northern Ireland and attended Queen’s University, Belfast. Her first novel, The Butterfly Cabinet, was published by Headline Review in 2011. Bernie is also the author of Sleepwalkers, a collection of short fiction (shortlisted for the Edge Hill Short Story Prize) and a contributor to The Long Gaze Back (New Island, 2015), an acclaimed anthology of Irish women writers spanning four centuries, and has numerous theatre credits to her name. Bernie lives in Portstewart, Northern Ireland, with her family.
Brian Kimberling is a native of Indiana and a graduate of Indiana University. In the mid-nineties he was a research assistant for a major study of Indiana songbirds, an experience central to his first book, SNAPPER. Since then he has lived and worked in the Czech Republic, Mexico, Turkey and England. He began writing SNAPPER on the Bath Spa Creative Writing MA in 2009, and was awarded the first annual Janklow & Nesbit Prize for the best manuscript to emerge from the course. He lives in Bath with his wife and son.
Claire Dederer is the author of the New York Times-bestselling memoir Poser: My Life in Twenty-Three Yoga Poses which Elizabeth Gilbert called ‘the book we all need’. A book critic, essayist, and reporter, Dederer is a long-time contributor to The New York Times, and has also written for The Atlantic, Vogue, Slate, The Nation, and New York magazine, among others. She lives on an island near Seattle with her family.
Eowyn Ivey’s debut novel, THE SNOW CHILD, was published in twenty-six languages, and became an international bestseller. It was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize 2013, and Eowyn won the International Author of the Year category at the 2012 National Book Awards. A former bookseller, Eowyn lives in Palmer, Alaska, with her family.
Hannah Tinti grew up in Salem, Massachusetts and has worked as a writer, editor and teacher. She is the author of the short story collection ANIMAL CRACKERS and co-founder and editor-in-chief of One Story magazine. Her first novel, THE GOOD THIEF, was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year, winner of the Centre for Fiction’s First Novel Prize and a recipient of the American Library Association’s Alex Award. She lives in Brooklyn, New York.
Jennifer Johnston is one of the foremost Irish writers of her, or any, generation. She has won the Whitbread Prize (THE OLD JEST), the Evening Standard Best First Novel Award (for THE CAPTAINS AND THE KINGS), the Yorkshire Post Award, Best Book of the Year (twice, for THE CAPTAINS AND THE KINGS and HOW MANY MILES TO BABYLON?). She was also shortlisted for the Booker Prize with SHADOWS ON OUR SKIN.
Johanna Lane was born in Ireland and studied English Literature at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland, where she was awarded the Hemingway Prize for her short fiction. Upon graduating, the University awarded her the Robert T. Jones Graduate Fellowship to study in the U.S. and she chose Columbia’s Creative Writing MFA programme. There, she was one of six students from the School of the Arts selected to teach undergraduate writing. As a work in progress, her first novel, COMING IN FROM THE SEA, was short-listed for the University of East Anglia’s Charles Pick Fellowship. She teaches composition and creative writing in New York.
Kaite Welsh is an Edinburgh-based journalist and critic and the Literature Officer at Creative Scotland. She writes a weekly column for the Daily Telegraph and makes frequent appearances on BBC Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour. She was included on the Independent on Sunday’s 2015 Rainbow List, which recognises the 100 most influential LGBTI people in the UK. In 2014 Kaite was shortlisted for both the Scottish New Writers Award and the Moniack Mhor Bridge Award. She has also been prize-shortlisted for her short fiction, which has appeared in several anthologies. The inspiration for the Sarah Gilchrist novels struck when Kaite was a student and saw a plaque to Sophia Jex-Blake, one of the first women to study medicine at Edinburgh University.
Lavanya Sankaran is the author of THE RED CARPET, the acclaimed debut collection selected for Poets & Writers Magazine’s Best First Fiction award as well as the Barnes and Noble Discover Great New Writers award. Her work has been featured in the Atlantic Monthly and the Wall Street Journal among others, including publications in India and Europe. She studied at Bryn Mawr College and lives in Bangalore with her husband and daughter. THE HOPE FACTORY is her first novel.
Lesley Nneka Arimah
Lesley Nneka Arimah was born in the UK and grew up wherever her father was stationed for work, which was sometimes Nigeria, sometimes not. She has been published in The New Yorker and Granta, her story ‘Light’ was winner of the 2015 Commonwealth Short Story Prize for Africa, and the title story of ‘What It Means When A Man Falls From The Sky’ was shortlisted for the Caine Prize 2016.
Maggie O’Farrell is the author of seven novels, AFTER YOU’D GONE, MY LOVER’S LOVER, THE DISTANCE BETWEEN US, which won a Somerset Maugham Award, THE VANISHING ACT OF ESME LENNOX, THE HAND THAT FIRST HELD MINE, which won the 2010 Costa Novel Award, INSTRUCTIONS FOR A HEATWAVE, which was shortlisted for the 2013 Costa Novel Award, and THIS MUST BE THE PLACE. She lives in Edinburgh.
Natalie Young was born in London in 1976. She studied English at Bristol University and published her first novel, We All Ran Into the Sunlight, in 2011 while working as the Arts and Books Editor of Prospect Magazine. For several years before that she bought books for serialisation in The Times and contributed regularly to the Books section and to the Saturday Review. Season to Taste or How to Eat Your Husband was published to great critical acclaim and commercial success in the UK in 2014 and has sold into a further seven foreign territories. Natalie is now writing the screenplay for Season to Taste while also working on her third novel as part of a Creative Writing PhD at Goldsmiths, University of London. She lives in London with her two children.
Patrick Gale was born on the Isle of Wight. He spent his infancy at Wandsworth Prison, which his father governed, then grew up in Winchester before going to Oxford University. He now lives on a farm near Land’s End. One of this country’s best-loved novelists, his most recent works are A Perfectly Good Man, The Whole Day Through and the Richard and Judy bestseller Notes From An Exhibition.
Peggy Riley is a writer and playwright. She recently won a Highly Commended prize in the 2011 Bridport Prize and was published in their latest anthology. Her short fiction has been broadcast on BBC Radio and published in “New Short Stories 4”, Mslexia Magazine (Third prize – Women’s Short Fiction Competition 2010), and as an app on Ether Books. Her plays have been commissioned and produced off-West End, regionally, and on tour. She has been a festival producer, a bookseller, and writer-in-residence at a young offender prison. Originally from Los Angeles, Peggy now lives on the North Kent coast in Britain.
Ronan Ryan is originally from Clonmel in Ireland. At thirteen, he moved to Nagoya, Japan. He was educated in Dublin and studied psychology at university before embarking on an MSc in neuropsychology. He completed an MSc in Creative Writing at the University of Edinburgh, and lived in New Zealand, where he completed an English Literature PhD. Returning to Dublin, he worked on Jimmy Dice, his first novel. He lives in Dublin, still.
Roopa Farooki was born in Lahore in Pakistan and brought up in London. She graduated from New College, Oxford and worked in advertising before turning to write fiction. Roopa now lives in south-east England and south-west France with her husband, twin baby girls and two sons. Bitter Sweets, her first novel, was nominated for the Orange Award for New Writers 2007. Roopa’s novels have been published internationally and translated into a dozen languages.
Sarah Day lives in London, where she works as a science communicator at the Geological Society. She has written columns for a variety of publications, including the Guardian and The Vagenda. After graduating with a Masters in the History and Philosophy of Science from Durham University, she studied Science Communication at Imperial College London. Mussolini’s Island is her first novel.
Sarah Duguid grew up on a farm in North Lincolnshire and was educated in Derbyshire and at Durham University where she read English Literature. After university, she lived and worked in New York and South Africa before returning to London where she now lives with her partner and their son. She is currently working on a Masters in English at UCL as well as her second novel.
Sarah Schmidt is a librarian from Melbourne. She became obsessed with the Borden story after coming across Lizzie’s case by chance in a second-hand bookstore and her passionate research has even taken her to stay for several nights in the Borden house. Find out more on her website https://sarahschmidt.org/ and on Twitter @ikillnovel.
Stephanie Bishop was named one of the Sydney Morning Herald‘s Best young Australian Novelists for her debut novel, The Singing. Stephanie studied in Cambridge, where part of THE OTHER SIDE OF THE WORLD is set, and is currently a lecturer in Creative Writing at the University of New South Wales.
Sue Monk Kidd
Sue Monk Kidd is the author of the highly acclaimed bestsellers The Secret Life of Bees and The Mermaid Chair. The Secret Life of Bees was her first novel. Selling over 6 million copies, it has become a modern classic and has been adapted into a feature film starring Queen Latifah, Dakota Fanning and Jennifer Hudson.