A few years ago I was having coffee with my agent at St Pancras. Across a crowded room I spotted my all time favourite author, Frederick Forsyth, also having coffee, or perhaps, sensibly, something stronger.
Of course I hyperventilated and Viv said, ‘Go and say hello, you’re with the same publishing house after all.’
I bottled it. What if he waved me away? What if he thought I wanted a selfie?
Well, I did, but…
Guess what – after long distance hero worship HE IS COMING TO OUR WforW LITFEST DAY ON MARCH 25TH. Sorry, I’m shouting.
You see, I had written to ask if he would send us a message of support for our Words for the Wounded’s LitFest Day held annually to raise funds in support of wounded troops and to give opportunities for writers and readers. He said, ‘I’ll come and talk instead.’ More hyperventilating.
We are all utterly thrilled. We already have the most amazing line-up and Frederick is the cherry on top of the cake. Not sure if he will like that analogy, but there you go.
First thing in the morning I will be asking him about his memoir The Outsider which I have just finished reading, and which explains not just the real happenings behind his novels, but much much more – it’s exciting, funny, moving, just like his novels.
We also have the lovely jubbley WforW patron, Captain Ian Thornton, talking just before lunch, of Helmand: Diaries of Frontline soldiers. In the middle of the morning, like the jam in the middle of the sandwich, we have Dr Kathleen Thompson, Frost’s health correspondent and Award winning author of From Both Ends of the Stethoscope. Her journey with breast cancer, and how to obtain good treatment. Dr Kathleen will talk of how to help promote your books and be around for questions throughout the day.
I have to say we do excel with our lunch, planned by Jan Speedie, with the odd cake or salad made by me and Penny Deacon and my family will be looking after us. The wine flows, but you’ll need to stay awake for the afternoon speakers though they’re so interesting, it won’t be a problem.
The afternoon is a similar feast with – Isabelle Grey, the acclaimed screenwriter, author and all time good sport. She’s written for many excellent television series and for film. CJ Carver the top notch crime writer (love her work) will be speaking next and after tea, an editor, (used to be mine) with whom I’ve had too many fun lunches that lead to a headache. Gillian Holmes will be talking about how to grab an editor’s attention with your opening chapters.
We have exhibitions by photographer Cire Simone and artist Sharon Bennett.
As always, there’s much of interest for readers and writers, and it’s a great networking day. 100% of everything raised goes to those in need, as it does all the time because the grannies absorb all expenses.
Come and meet us, we don’t bite, and we’d love to see you.
WforW LitFest Day: 25th March. Downley Community Centre, Downley, High Wycombe HP13 5TR. 9.30 – 5.30.
To secure your ticket, and find out more: www.wordsforthewounded.co.uk