The BAD Sydney Crime Writers Festival is back again this year with not even a dangerous Covid Crisis being able to kill it off, with weekly online talks featuring four best-selling female authors taking place all throughout September before the festival returns for live, in-person events in early December.
While governments and politicians are letting many of us down with their handling of the Covid Crisis, the arts sector despite little support continues to do its bit to lift the spirits of a restless and weary public in lockdown with four of the world’s top crime-fiction writers to take part in exclusive interviews throughout this month thanks to the BAD Sydney Crime Writers Festival.
Each online author talk will take place at 6pm (AEST) every Wednesday evening in September from this week onward and features a roster of women authors and writers well-known to readers and viewers across the crime-fiction universe.
The talks kick off this week on Wednesday, September 8 with Girl On A Train author Paula Hawkins in discussion with Suzanne Leal about her latest book, A Slow Fire Burning.
The ‘Queen of Crime’, Val McDermid will then next be up on Wednesday, September 15 to talk about her new book 1979 – the first book in a new series featuring a young reporter in a tough Glasgow newsroom. McDermid began her writing career as journalist in Glasgow so her insider perspective will mean she has plenty of tales to tell.
American author Karin Slaughter will then be in conversation with Andy Muir on Wednesday, September 22 about her nail-biting and gritty thriller False Witness. If you like your stories dark and set to the backdrop of a bleak and failing United States, Slaughter is sure to intrigue audiences with her standalone story of two sisters who do something terrible when they are young.
At the end of the month on Wednesday 29 September, the creator of the much-loved Vera and Shetland series, Ann Cleeves, will talk to Sue Turnbull about her book The Heron’s Cry. It’s Cleeves’s second book of the Matthew Venn series set in North Devon, which will also be hitting screens soon.
If vaccination rates go up and the current Covid Crisis in Sydney gets under control, the BAD Sydney Crime Writers Festival is expected to then return as a live, in-person event in the first week of December.
The Festival’s director, Catherine du Peloux Menage, told True Crime News Weekly it was an honour to be able to do their small bit to help the millions going through lockdown in Sydney and across Australia because of the Covid pandemic.
“When no travel is possible beyond 5 kilometres from the front door and that only twice a day for an hour, travelling in the mind is a solution. When you can’t talk to friends over a coffee or a drink, reading the conversations that other people are having is a good alternative,” she said.
“When you can’t see your loved ones or meet new people, sharing other lives in the pages of books is better than nothing. When no one knows what is happening next, when we’ll get back to our lives or even what those lives will be, reading stories which have an ending and a resolution, be they real or fictional can be hugely satisfying and comforting. When your access to enriching and soul-enhancing beauty is limited, encountering beauty – written or visual – in the pages of books is a richness of its own.
“This is why we should be reading everything and anything at the moment – literary fiction, poetry, memoir, true crime, crime fiction, cookery books or whatever you can find.”
For more information about the BAD Sydney Crime Writers Festival, visit here.