Last weekend saw the first Capital Crime held at de vere Connaught rooms and I had the pleasure of being there. It was my first book festival ,and I was anxious /nervous as its the biggest event ive been to . I had all those doubts of whether it was for me if anyone would talk to me…silly I know as Ive already met some people that were going ! anyway within half of hour of being there my nerves had gone and I had an amazing time .
I already know ill be back and i may even see if i can be a volunteer ..if health allows me to!
What a festival it was . i met bloggers old and new,authors and publishing peeps ,some ive spoke to on twitter for years .
Having lisa Jewell and Fiona Cummins recognise you and come out their way to hug you was quite surreal…
I arrived Friday morning after dropping my bag at my hotel. Picked up my weekend pass which i must add i got at a discounted rate . I emailed early in the year explained my situation and was offered a huge discount for not just a day pass but a weekend pass!
Anyway to the panels i went to.. we were spoilt for choice
- The interrogation of Mark Billingham . Where he was questioned by Grahan Bartlett a experienced police detective. This was very funny.
- Are we living in a spy thriller?Charles Cumming, Frank gardner and stella Rimington discuss modern espionage with Adam Hamdy.
- The truth in pieces Belinda Bauer,Jane casey, Robert goddard and Alex north piece together a mystery with Joe haddow. This was one i was looking forward to and didnt dissapoint.
- The psychology of tension Mark Edwards & Lisa Jewell in conversation with Claire Mcgowan. This was another panel i was excited for after years of reading lisa. Also mark is really funny !
- London, the capital of crime. Martina cole and Ali Karim discuss london as an iconic setting for the crime and thriller genre. Wow what a legend she is. Martina was the first crime writer i read at age 17 , she is comical,real and passionate about books and her work within prisons.
- Is crime fiction a problem for feminists? Killer women members Julia Crouch,Sarah Hillary ,Amanda Jennings , Colette Mcbeth and Kate Rhodes in conversation . Again a panel that was high on my list, inspirational women talking about murder ..not just men ..and womens rights.
- Whose crime is it anyway? Grand final. Hosted by paul clayton. Debut authors battle against each other..with added drama reenactments..
The final panel i went to…
8.adapting worlds: books to screen
Sj watson and Paula daly discuss adaptations with Adam Hamdy . I love both these authors and was really looking forward to this panel
By the end of this panel my brain was buzzing but also frazzled lol so myself and other bloggers went and got dinner. Which was lovely .
After a luxurious night (alone away fro kids) in premier inn it was a early start for day 2.
Again there was so much choice and i only stayed till lunch.
So saturdays panels i went to were as follows
- When women make murderers. Fiona Cummins, laura shepherd robinsin,cj tudor and olivia kiernab discuss success of female crime and thriller authors with amy mclellan. Theres not much that ill get up early for but these women i did. Fantastic bunch of women who all seemed lovely but are creating dark dark books!!
- Chilled to the bone
Ragnar jonasson ,will dean,antti Tuomainen and Ysra Siguroardottir discuss scandi noir with Karen sullivan . Ive not read any of these authors but this was a fascinsting panel, in particular Antti who was very funny. It was a delight to meet Karen to after years of engaging on twitter.
3. Beneath the surface
Elly griffiths, teresa driscoll louise candlish ,fiona Barton discuss how truth is never as it seems with erin kelly .
Another great female led panel where twists in books were discussed.
Finally for me as my time was drawing to a close was
4 Britain’s toughest streets Dreda say mitchell , steph Marland ,Amer Anwah and MW Craven talk about getting inspirstikn from gritty streets of the uk with David Mark.
Ive not read any of these authors before but they were all inspirational and refreshing to listen to. Dreda is representing women from walks of life that are often hidden and she was empowering!
So that was my last panel , i was sad to go as Saturday afternoon looked amazing too.
I loved every minute and im only just starting to come down from the adreline . Ive even come away inspired to write which ive been saying for years but words are finally happening.
Will i come back next year…oh yes!
Do i have a list of authors i think would be great on the panels. Oh yes!
Do i now have even more authors on my tbr pile.. oh yes !
Before i wrap up with what i thought made capital crime rock ive got a few things that didnt make it rock. Nothing major but as it was its first year im sure all feedback is welcomed ( i hope )
- First up as someone with a disability which means i cant stand for prolonged periods of time. The bar area could have done with more seats, i only visited once but it was something i observed. Had i stayed all weekend this could have been a challenge.
- The timing between events were quite slim often meaning you missed out on signings or had to rush for toilet. Again its amazing the day was so packed with choice but maybe a lounger turnaround.
- In the panels there seemed to be only one volunteer with a microphone ,maybe a idea to have one each side.
See that wasnt too painful. …
On to the things i thought made it a great event
- Friendly staff from the doors being open to the bookshop staff. This is a big plus especially for peoples first contact.
- Free tea and coffee..not that i got much but yes!
- Goody bag…always a winner
- Keeping you in the loop even before the event
- Lots of seats in the rooms
- It felt very laid back. I didnt feel i was being looked down on by anyone in the business .
- Interacting with authors …. fangirl moments
- The quality of panels specially for first year was outstanding.
- Enabling access to people like myself on a low income.
- Seeing how happy/proud the parents were of their baby ..David and Adam regarding their first festival.
- Generally being about so many book lovers
So ill be there next year…will you ?
And who would you like to see there. Another blogger asked this and i had such a long list but today ill share 10 auhors i think /would like to be a guest of capital crime 2020
- Adele parks
- Kat Diamond
- Angela Clarke
- John marrs
- Jack jordan
- Dorothy koomson
- Jane corey
- Louise jensen
- Lisa hall
- Lucy clarke
Thanks for reading! And heres some pictures.. im terrible at taking pictures so next time ill take more.