Sunday, November 28, 2010

A Literary Advent Calendar

With the literary festivals in the autumn, you could be forgiven for thinking things go quiet in the winter, but no, there's plenty of Mancunian literary action on. I enjoyed the launch of the new Hidden Gem press on Thursday, with readings by Emma Unsworth, Zoe Lambert and Claire Massey, as well as an impassioned manifesto on behalf of northern fiction from Sherry Ashworth, co-founder of the press. Their first novel, Unsworth's "Hungry, the Stars and Everything" is out in 2011, and has that most un-northern of characters as a lead, the metropolitan food critic. (The night's reviewed by Clare Conlon here, and since I was sitting next to have very little to add.)

Next week is the latest instalment of the Other Room, including Neil Addison, soon to be published in the same Salt Modern Voices series as myself, and, on Friday, the reissue of some of Anthony Burgess's novels, with a discussion featuring Jonathan Meades and Roger Lewis. Two other regular nights, Inn Verse and Counting Backwards compete for your attention between these two events, next Thursday.

Finally, though its not primarily literary, I'm involved in the running of Play Space, a free day of events for anyone interested in how art and digital meet, including workshops, performances, installations and an "unconference". That's next Saturday 4th December at the Contact Theatre and all are welcome, just register at the link above.

Who needs an advent calendar with so many events going on?

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