2021 Catch-Up

EVENTS

All events are taking place online and are free to attend. Register in advance to receive a streaming link directly to your inbox.

Thursday 9 September

Postmortem

09/09/2021 - 7:00 pm - Online

Postmortem

UEA MA Crime Fiction Anthology 2021 launch

Join us live for short readings from future stars of the genre at the live online launch of Postmortem, a gripping anthology of crime fiction from this year’s UEA Creative Writing MA. The event will feature an introduction by Elly Griffiths, author of the bestselling series of Dr Ruth Galloway novels. The book is available for pre-order from Eggbox Publishing.

‘Within this anthology, you will find wonderful stories that range across this most elastic and enduring of genres.’

– Elly Griffiths

Friday 10 September

The Noirwich Lecture 2021: Megan Abbott

10/09/2021 - 7:00 pm - Online

The Noirwich Lecture 2021: Megan Abbott

Megan Abbott

We are delighted to welcome bestselling and award-winning US author Megan Abbott for the annual Noirwich Lecture; a rich, nuanced, and thoughtful reflection on the ethics and responsibility of the crime writer , and the need to reframe the focus in news journalism. How do we come to the beliefs we hold? Whose point of view is taking centre stage? How does crime writing feed into corrupt systems and which relationships do we need to reassess going forward?

Megan will also discuss true crime in the age of the docuseries. Netflix recently adapted her novel Dare Me, and she has recently worked with David Simon (The Wire) on HBO. Join us for a fascinating look into the current state of documentaries and the explosion in popularity of true crime.

Megan is the award-winning author of nine crime novels, including the just published The Turnout, and the bestselling You Will Know Me and Dare Me. Her work has won or been nominated for the CWA Steel Dagger, the International Thriller Writers Award, the Los Angeles Times Book Prize and five Edgar awards. Her writing has appeared in the New York Times, the Guardian, Paris Review and the Wall Street Journal. She is also the author of The Street Was Mine, a study of hardboiled fiction, and film noir. She received her Ph.D. in American literature from New York University. A writer on HBO’s highly acclaimed The Deuce, she recently served as co-showrunner and co-creator of Dare Me, which completed its first season on the USA Network and Netflix internationally.

Enjoy an evening in the company of one of America’s finest crime novelists, with introduction by Henry Sutton and live Q&A – all from the comfort of home.

Megan Abbott

Megan Abbott

Megan is the award-winning author of nine crime novels, including the just published The Turnout, and the bestselling You Will Know Me and Dare Me. Her work has won or been nominated for the CWA Steel Dagger, the International Thriller Writers Award, the Los Angeles Times Book Prize and five Edgar awards. Her writing has appeared in the New York Times, the Guardian, Paris Review and the Wall Street Journal. She is also the author of The Street Was Mine, a study of hardboiled fiction, and film noir. She received her Ph.D. in American literature from New York University. A writer on HBO’s highly acclaimed The Deuce, she recently served as co-showrunner and co-creator of Dare Me, which completed its first season on the USA Network and Netflix internationally.

‘There is not a writer alive who is better at investigating the tension and threat of violence at the centre of women’s lives than Megan Abbott.’

— Attica Locke, author of Bluebird, Bluebird and Heaven, My Home

‘Abbott is a legend for good reason. No one combines the style of classic noir with the psyches of sophisticated men and women who are willing to do anything — anything — to succeed better than Abbott.’

The Washington Post

‘Megan Abbott manages to be a master of suspense, a gifted literary novelist, and a brilliant voice on gender, power and obsession, all at once.’

— J. Courtney Sullivan, bestselling author of Saints for All Occasions and Maine

Saturday 11 September

Killer Debuts

11/09/2021 - 5:00 pm - Online

Killer Debuts

Greg Buchanan, Femi Kayode, Catriona Ward

The brutal murder of three young students in a Nigerian university town, an English seaside town gripped with panic and paranoia, and an ordinary house on an ordinary street holding an unimaginable darkness....

Discover your next favourite book from our selection of the best debut novels in crime writing from graduates of the University of East Anglia. Emerging crime superstars Greg Buchanan (Sixteen Horses), Femi Kayode (Lightseekers) and Catriona Ward (The Last House on Needless Street) will reveal where to find inspiration, how to write an attention-grabbing debut, and what gave them their big break.

The event will be chaired by writer, editor, interviewer and book festival programmer Lee Randall.

Greg Buchanan

Greg Buchanan

Greg Buchanan was born in 1989 and lives in the Scottish Borders. He studied English at the University of Cambridge and completed a PhD at King’s College London in identification and ethics. He is a graduate of UEA’s Creative Writing MA. Sixteen Horses is his first novel.

‘Unlike anything else you’ll read this year, Sixteen Horses is a deeply disconcerting ride. Irresistible’

— Val McDermid

‘Utterly gripping, exquisitely written [. . .] Haunting and very dark, this is certainly worth the read’

Guardian

Femi Kayode

Femi Kayode

Femi Kayode is an award-winning novelist and screenwriter. He is a graduate of the MA in Crime Fiction at the University of East Anglia, where his novel Lightseekers won the Little, Brown / UEA Crime Fiction Award. He was a Packard Gates Fellow in Film at the University of Southern California and has built an impressive resume on prime-time television by creating, writing and developing several award-winning TV dramas.

Lightseekers is his first novel and the beginning of a series of books based on the investigations of Dr Philip K. Talwo. He lives in Namibia with his wife, two sons and two overly friendly dogs.

‘An action-packed and spirited debut.’

― Oyinkan Braithwaite, author of My Sister, the Serial Killer

‘What a sensational debut. Confident, beautifully-paced writing. Dr Philip Taiwo is a protagonist I want to meet again, and the setting (a Nigerian university town) is so well-drawn. Intelligent, suspenseful and utterly engrossing.’

― Will Dean, author of Dark Pines

​’Loved the start of this brilliant new series from Femi Kayode. Such a clever concept - and a really unusual hero in investigative psychologist Philip Taiwo. Lightseekers is both a pageturner and a fascinating analysis of a crisis in Nigeria.’

― Holly Watt, author of To the Lions

Catriona Ward

Catriona Ward

Catriona Ward was born in Washington, DC and grew up in the United States, Kenya, Madagascar, Yemen, and Morocco. She read English at St Edmund Hall, Oxford and is a graduate of the Creative Writing MA at the University of East Anglia. Her gothic thriller The Last House on Needless Street, published in March 2021, was Times Book of the Month, Observer Book of the Month, March Editor’s Pick on Open Book, a Between the Covers BBC2 book club selection, a Times bestseller, and is being developed for film by Andy Serkis’s production company, The Imaginarium. It will be published in the US by Tor Nightfire in September 2021. 

Ward’s second novel Little Eve won the 2019 Shirley Jackson Award, the August Derleth Prize at the British Fantasy Awards and was a Guardian best book of 2018. Her debut Rawblood also won the 2016 August Derleth, making her the only woman to have won the prize twice. Her short stories have appeared in numerous anthologies and shortlisted for various prizes. She lives in London and Devon.

‘It's a true nerve-shredder that keeps its mind-blowing secrets to the very end. Haven't read anything this exciting since Gone Girl

― Stephen King

‘A truly captivating Gothic-thriller novel - a champion of the genre, it hooks you in from the very first page... a rare work of fiction that explores the human will to endure’

Independent

‘Ward's superlative novel - part psychological thriller, part Gothic horror - plays countless tricks on the reader and rewards close attention’

Financial Times

Murder in Tokyo: David Peace

11/09/2021 - 7:00 pm - Online

Murder in Tokyo: David Peace

David Peace

We are delighted to welcome David Peace, the award-winning author of the Red Riding Quartet, GB84 and The Damned Utd, for a dissection of his ‘astonishing’ (Guardian) new novel, Tokyo Redux – a thrilling fictionalisation of one of Japan’s most enduring and haunting mysteries.

At the forefront of contemporary international fiction, David is known for his unflinching and highly innovative storytelling. Tokyo Redux is the final instalment in the popular Tokyo Trilogy, which explores the true crimes that shaped Japan in the aftermath of the Second World War.

David will be joined in conversation by Tom Benn to discuss how he balances detailed research with carefully crafted thrills and multi-dimensional characters to create a gripping neo-noir story. They will also look more widely at Peace’s career and how his work has influenced and resonated beyond the page.

David Peace

David Peace

David Peace is the award-winning author of the Red Riding Quartet and The Damned Utd. The Red Riding Quartet (Nineteen Seventy Four, Nineteen Seventy Seven, Nineteen Eighty and Nineteen Eighty Three) grew from this obsession with the dark side of Yorkshire. These are powerful novels of crime and police corruption, using the Yorkshire Ripper as their basis and inspiration. The Quartet was adapted into a three-part serial for Channel 4, Red Riding.

‘[A] powerful, overwhelming novel, in which genre excitement steadily gives way to the uncannier frisson of being plugged into a current of secret knowledge.’

— Anthony Cummins, Guardian on Tokyo Redux

‘This is hard-hitting, hypnotic, committed storytelling from a master craftsman. His words flow through a maze the reader will never want to leave. And in this case never will.’

— John King on Tokyo Redux

‘A masterpiece and a classic . . . it speaks it speaks so much to the world as it is now.’

—  Anna Sherman on Tokyo Redux

‘Peace does everything he can in his novels to upset conventions, eschewing linear narrative and obvious heroes and villains, in favour of formal daring, linguistic innovation and multidimensional characters.’

— Garan Holcolmbe

Sunday 12 September

Behind the Torn Curtain

12/09/2021 - 4:00 pm - Online

Behind the Torn Curtain

Maryla Szymiczkowa, Antonia Lloyd-Jones

Maryla Szymiczkowa is the pen name of Polish crime writing duo, Jacek Dehnel and Piotr Tarczynski. Join them in conversation with their translator Antonia Lloyd Jones to celebrate the second book in their thrilling Agatha Christie-style series, Karolina, or the Torn Curtain – a sequel to the tongue-in-cheek mystery, Mrs Mohr Goes Missing.

Set in Poland in 1985 against the backdrop of the women's cause, Karolina, or the Torn Curtain refuses to turn a blind eye to the injustices and inequalities of its era – and ours. Together, Jacek, Piotr and Antonia will discuss Poland as a setting for crime fiction, how to  strike the balance between humour and darkness, and the process of translation. 

This event will be chaired by Henry Sutton, crime novelist and Professor of Creative Writing and Crime Fiction at UEA.

Maryla Szymiczkowa

Maryla Szymiczkowa

Jacek Dehnel is a writer, poet and translator. He has written several novels, including Lala (Oneworld, 2018) and Saturn (Dedalus, 2012). Jacek writes crime fiction under the pseudonym Maryla Szymiczkowa with partner Piotr Tarczynski, a translator and historian. They live in Warsaw.

‘An ingenious marriage of comedy and crime.'

– Olga Tokarczuk, 2018 winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature

‘Strong-minded Zofia is an appealing character and the sprightly narrative and vivid evocation of turn-of-the-century Poland make for an enjoyable tale.'

Guardian

‘This is a crime story rich in period detail and telling observations on human nature.'

– Crime Time, on Karolina, or the Torn Curtain

Antonia Lloyd-Jones

Antonia Lloyd-Jones

Antonia Lloyd-Jones translates from Polish, and last year her translation of Drive Your Plow Over the Bones of the Dead by Olga Tokarczuk was shortlisted for the Man Booker International award. She translates classic and contemporary fiction, reportage, crime fiction, poetry and children’s books. She is a former co-chair of the UK Translators Association, and mentors on the NCW Emerging Translators’ Mentorship Programme.

Your House Will Pay: Steph Cha

12/09/2021 - 7:00 pm - Online

Your House Will Pay: Steph Cha

Steph Cha

Join Steph Cha, author of the explosive novel Your House Will Pay, for a look at how crime writing can interrogate issues of identity, structural injustice and power in the world today.  

Winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize and the California Book Award, Your House Will Pay is an unflinching study of the second-generation immigrant experience in the long shadow of the Los Angeles race riots of the 1990s, and the seething injustices of the present day. Attica Locke called it ‘a touching portrait of two families bound together by a split-second decision that tore a hole through an entire city.’

Steph will be joined in conversation by Nathan Ashman, Lecturer in Crime Writing at UEA, to discuss this and her previous trilogy of crime novels featuring her amateur PI Juniper Song. They will also examine the historic relationship between crime fiction and Los Angeles, and the role of the city in her writing.

Steph Cha

Steph Cha

Steph Cha is the author of Your House Will Pay, winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize and the California Book Award, and the Juniper Song crime trilogy. She’s a critic whose work has appeared in the Los Angeles Times, USA Today, and the Los Angeles Review of Books, where she served as noir editor, and is the current series editor of the Best American Mystery & Suspense anthology. A native of the San Fernando Valley, she lives in Los Angeles with her family.

‘With Your House Will Pay, Steph Cha has taken a dark moment in Los Angeles’s violent history and cracked it wide open, creating a prism of understanding—of the pull of generational violence and its enduring devastation, but also of the power of human grace against all odds. It’s a touching portrait of two families bound together by a split-second decision that tore a hole through an entire city.’

— Attica Locke

‘Steph Cha brings a modern female voice and a smart sense of humor to the noir tradition. This is a writer to watch.’

– Allison Leotta, author of Speak of the Devil

WORKSHOPS

Don’t miss our online and in-person creative writing workshops! Each workshop will take place twice over the festival weekend. Limited places available. Online workshops will take place over Zoom, and in-person workshops at Dragon Hall in Norwich.

Latest news

Five tips on embarking into the dark heart of crime fiction

Fiction writing advice from Mary Paulson-Ellis, the award-winning author of The Other Mrs Walker.

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Essential, gripping true crime reads

Paul Willetts, the critically acclaimed author of King Con and Rendezvous at the Russian Tea Rooms, recommends six essential true crime reads for readers and writers.

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Win a crime fiction book bundle

We've teamed up with The Crime Vault to gift one lucky winner with ten unmissable crime fiction books.

Read more

Noirwich Crime Writing Festival 2021 announced

Internationally acclaimed writer Megan Abbott ('A legend for good reason' – The Washington Post) will deliver the 2021 Noirwich Crime Writing Festival Lecture, it has been revealed today.

Read more
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