Sunday, 23 May 2010

The Curzon Group at CrimeFest 2010

The Curzon Group Panel behind the scenes in the Green Room at CrimeFest before our panel. From the left, Richard Jay Parker, Zoe Sharp, Leigh Russell, Tom Cain and Matt Lynn. Here we are in action. From the left: Zoe Sharp, Tom Cain, Matt Lynn, Leigh Russell and Richard Jay Parker (photo courtesy of Zoe). It may look as though we are all talking at once, but in reality our moderator, Zoe, kept us all in order with impressive wit and aplomb. The Festival was very busy - an amazing feat of organisation by Adrian and Myles, with concurrent panels, interviews and individual talks by various crime fiction authors from established bestsellers like MC Beaton and Colin Dexter to debut authors. Not all the new authors were unknown names. Curzon new authors Richard Jay Parker and myself (Leigh) appeared on a Debut Authors panel which included Mike Hodges who has just published his first novel, WATCHING THE WHEELS COME OFF. Mike Hodges wrote and directed the iconic film Get Carter (the original version!) The Debut Authors panel was moderated by Marcel Berlins. I felt a little daunted at the prospect of participating in a discussion he was to chair, but he put us all at our ease, even the inexperienced panellists like me, and he made the experience really enjoyable.

The Curzon Group were busy too. In addition to our own panel, Zoe Sharp gave a demonstration of self defense and participated on a panel entitled 'Grimly Fiendish', Matt Lynn discussed the appeal of the military thriller, I spoke about the challenge of writing a series, and Clem Chambers was on a panel 'Too Tough to Die'.

At CrimeFest I saw sale copies of ROAD CLOSED for the first time! Books were sent straight to the convention by the printers - genuinely 'hot off the press'. ROAD CLOSED wasn't due out just yet, but WH Smith's Travel wanted to do a promotion in June, so the printing was brought forward. So I hope you look out for it at stations and airports in June.

I've blogged more about my own experience at CrimeFest on my blog

Leigh Russell

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