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Northern Bookshelf Live

A stack of new books written by Northern authors

Welcome Northern Bookshelf Live 2024 – a new scheme from New Writing North, connecting the best writers with libraries and readers across the North of England.   

Building on New Writing North’s previous Read Regional scheme for libraries, as well as our quarterly Northern Bookshelf newsletter, Northern Bookshelf Live supports author events in local libraries.

From spring onwards, libraries will be hosting in-person events in their regions with Northern authors who have recently published books. Our selection of ten brilliant authors, who all live and work in the North of England, have previously been featured in our Northern Bookshelf newsletter.

Keep an eye on this page to see events happening near you in 2024!

Featured authors:

  • Author photo of Ashleigh Nugent

    Ashleigh Nugent

    Ashleigh is a writer, performer and director at RiseUp, based in Liverpool. Ashleigh’s debut novel Locks was published in June 2023 and was optioned for TV by BAFTA award nominees 2LE Media.

  • Author photo of Jane Claire Bradley

    Jane Claire Bradley

    Jane Claire Bradley is an award-winning queer, working-class writer, performer and educator living in Manchester. She writes fiction, short stories, essays and poetry, including her novel Dear Neighbour (2023).

  • Author photo of Jessica Irena Smith

    Jessica Irena Smith

    Jessica Irena Smith is writer and artist who is Newcastle-upon-Tyne born and bred and now lives in County Durham. The Summer She Vanished (2023), a gripping crime thriller, is her debut novel.

  • Author photo of Karen Powell

    Karen Powell

    Karen Powell is a previous Northern Writers’ Award-winner who lives in North Yorkshire. Fifteen Wild Decembers (2023) is her second novel, and has been shortlisted in the inaugral Nero Book Awards.

  • Author photo of Kit Fan

    Kit Fan

    Kit Fan is an award-winning poet and novelist based in York. The Ink Cloud Reader (2023) is his third poetry collection, and was shortlised for both the Forward Prize and the T.S. Eliot Prize.

  • Author photo of Lucy Nichol

    Lucy Nichol

    Lucy Nichol is an experienced writer and mental health advocate based in Newcastle upon Tyne. Her latest novel, No Worries if Not! is a relatable and funny feminist read, published in August 2023. 

  • Author photo of Naomi Kelsey

    Naomi Kelsey

    Naomi Kelsey is the winner of two Northern Writers’ Awards, and lives in Newcastle upon Tyne where she works an English teacher. The Burnings, inspired by historical witch trials, is her debut novel.

  • Author photo of Okechukwu Nzelu

    Okechukwu Nzelu

    Okechukwu Nzelu won a 2015 Northern Writers’ Award and is based in Manchester. His second novel, Here Again Now (2022) was shortlisted for the RSL Encore Award and longlisted for the Polari Prize, the Jhalak Prize and the Diverse Book Awards.

  • Author photo of Polly Atkin

    Polly Atkin

    Polly Atkin (FRSL) is a poet and nonfiction writer living in the Lake District. Some Of Us Just Fall: On Nature and Not Getting Better (2023) is a memoir exploring place, belonging and disability.

  • Author photo of Rose Wilding

    Rose Wilding

    Rose Wilding is a queer, working class writer from Newcastle Upon Tyne, who lives in Cheshire. She studied creative writing at the University of Manchester, and published her first crime novel, Speak of the Devil, in 2023.

Featured books:

Find an event near you

  • In Conversation with Lucy Nichol, Ingleby Barwick Library

    Monday 26 February, 6.30pm to 8pm
    Book here

    Meet author Lucy Nichol as she introduces a romcom for chronic over-apologisers everywhere – No worries if not!

    No worries if not! tells the story of Charlotte when she resolves to stop saying sorry for a year. When her space is invaded by a manspreader, Charlotte lets rip and finds herself unwittingly going viral on social media. With a touch of romance, a splash of comedy and some lovable Geordie spirit it’s an uplifting and relatable read.

    Lucy is a writer and mental health advocate based in Newcastle upon Tyne.

    Books will be available to purchase on the night from Drake the Bookshop

  • In Conversation with Lucy Nichol, Newcastle City Library

    Saturday 2 March, 1:30-3pm
    Book here

    This International Women’s Month, City Library invites Newcastle writer and mental health advocate Lucy Nichol to talk about her latest book, No Worries if Not!, a romcom for chronic over-apologisers everywhere.

    Lucy Nichol is a writer and mental health advocate based in Newcastle upon Tyne. Her published works include: No Worries if Not!, Parklife, The Twenty Seven Club, Snowflake and A Series of Unfortunate Stereotypes.

    Lucy has also written extensively in the national media, with a particular focus on mental health and addiction stigma, and has worked on behalf of Mind and Recovery Connections and with a range of TV soaps and dramas to ensure responsible mental health portrayals.

  • In Conversation with Rose Wilding, Newcastle City Library

    Saturday 23 March, 1:30-3pm
    Book here

    Seven women stand in shock in a seedy hotel room; a man’s severed head sits in the centre of the floor. Each of the women – the wife, the teenager, the ex, the journalist, the colleague, the friend, and the woman who raised him – has a very good reason to have done it, yet each swears she did not. Against the ticking clock of a murder investigation, each woman’s secret is brought to light as the connections between them converge to reveal a killer.

    An addictive feminist thriller about love, loyalty, and manipulation, Speak of the Devil explores the roles in which women are cast in the lives of terrible men… and the fallout when they refuse to stay silent for one moment longer.

    Rose Wilding is a queer, working class writer from Newcastle Upon Tyne, who lives in Cheshire. She studied creative writing at the University of Manchester, and published her first crime novel, Speak of the Devil, in 2023.

    Rose will join us in conversation on her debut crime novel and round out our 2024 Women’s History Month programme.

  • More events coming soon!

Find more about Northern Bookshelf Live here

 

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If you have any questions about Northern Bookshelf Live, or want to find out how your library can get involved, email us at [email protected]