2022 over 13s programme now complete!

We’re utterly thrilled to say that the two over-13s tents are now fully programmed for Wild Words Festival 2022. If you’re hoping to appear, please do consider sending us a proposal in August, when we’ll be programming 2023!

Watch this space for a proposal form later in the year.

Sparking a Lifeflong Love of Books

My First Literary Festival – Sparking a Lifelong Love of Books

Inspired by her experiences homeschooling in the pandemic, author and broadcaster Dr Emma Byrne has launched a brand new literary festival aimed at sparking a lifelong love of reading and writing.

Wild Words Festival (wildwordsfest.com) takes place on the Jubilee Weekend, ideally scheduled for half-term holidays and a family getaway. The programme is designed around families, with a dedicated Fives-to-15s tent, featuring authors like Anabelle Sami (Llama out Loud and Agent Zaiba Investigates) Mitch Johnson (Pop, Kick, and Spark) and Nicola Penfold (Between Sea and Sky, and Where the World Turns Wild.)

“During homeschooling, I saw first hand-the importance of sharing stories. As the world seemed to close around us, books opened horizons and gave us a chance to explore ideas. They made us laugh together, they helped us broach difficult subjects, and they brought us together,” says Emma Byrne, festival founder, and author of How to Build a Human and Swearing is Good for You. “I wanted to create a festival where adults can enjoy authors like Sophie Hannah, Lizzie Damilola Blackburn, Vaseem Khan, and David Robson while under-15s have their own programme of storytelling, comic-book making, and poetry writing.” 

Emma Byrne, Author, Broadcaster, Academic, photographed at Ravenscroft Park, Hammersmith
Emma Byrne

The festival also features an interactive theatre show (Red Planet Revolution) by Upstart Theatre, in which families can work together to found a colony on Mars. Everyone can enjoy an intergenerational silent disco with playlists suitable for every age, and ecology writer Nicola Penfold will be leading family nature walks.The festival is celebrating the Platinum Jubilee with a Big Jubilee Lunch on Sunday the 5th of June in aid of the festival’s chosen charity, BookTrust.

Saturday Lineup

Our lineup continues to take shape, and our programme is bursting with great sessions. Here’s what’s in store for the Saturday.

Our sessions include:

How to Write a Romcom with Lizzie Damilola Blackburn, Jeevani Charika, and Kirsty Eyre

Playable Stories: Writing for Games with Upstart Theatre, Battlebird Productions, and Roll/Flip/Draw

The Draw of Noir with Nadine Matheson, Adam Simcox, and Lara Thompson

Adventurous Tales for Kids with Annabelle Sami, Mitch Johnson, and Mini Travellers

Also featuring: Quantum Read: can writing the future change it? Kids comic-making workshop. Kids storywriting sessions. Killing Gandhi and Dante’s Divine Comedy with Vaseem Khan. Poetry therapy with Francoise Helene. Safe Thrills: The psychology of fiction. Intergenerational Silent Disco, family games, and interactive theatre.

Wild Words Fest & Covid Safety

So many of us have had to cancel plans since the beginning of 2020 – it’s natural to feel cautious about booking for an event. Here’s what we’re doing at Wild Words Fest to keep you (and your booking) safe.

Full Refunds until May 27th – Whatever your circumstances you can cancel, no questions asked, up to a week before the event. You will recieve a full refund of your ticket price.

Covid-insurance included – if you need to self isolate and cannot attend the event then send details to us at info@wildwordsfest.com with the subject line Covid Refund for a refund (minus a £7.50 per ticket excess.) You’ll also receive a discount code for priority booking for the 2023 event.

Covid-Safe event structure: We have marquees for shelter, but in the event is classed as an outdoor event as long as 50% of the side panels are open. That means that – should circumstances dictate that outdoor-only events are mandated or just a good idea – we can keep you safe with plenty of fresh air.

Full Covid risk assessment: We’ll be taking the measures that have been shown to reduce transmission – ventilation, limiting numbers, using masks in enclosed spaces, getting our vaccines. We will also encourage everyone to do their part to keep the festival healthy and safe. Depending on the prevailing circumstances we may carry out temperature checks on arrival. We encourage the use of LFTs before attending. Don’t forget, if you get that dreaded double, send us proof of your Covid status to get a ticket refund (minus £7.50 excess) plus a discount on the 2023 event. And our wishes for a speedy recovery!

Françoise Hélène

Next on our lineup is Françoise Hélène, a poet and a Forest School educator who loves unlocking imaginations by bringing stories to life and teaching in the most creative ways. Winner of the Canada Book Awards and the White Label Prize, Françoise Hélène weaves magic and creates space for growth for adults and children alike.

At#WildWordsFest, Françoise is leading workshops on poetry and storytelling.

Book early for the best discounts!

Paul Kenney

Biographer Paul Kenny is proof that non-fiction is full of engrossing stories. He is coming to #WildWordsFest to tell us about Amherst Villiers, otherwise known as “The Man Who Superchargerd #Bond.”

He now turns his pen to another polymath, Whitney Straight, who was a racing driver, fighter pilot and industrialist.

On Friday 3rd June 2022, Paul will talk about these extraordinary innovators, bringing their place in history to life.

Book early for the best discounts!

Nicola Penfold

We’re so excited to have Nicola Penfold at Wild Words Fest 2022. She writes incredible environmental fiction for young people, and will be joining us for a nature walk, and as part of our panel on whether SciFi can change the world.

Nicola’s debut novel Where the World Turns Wild was chosen as a Future Classic for the BookTrust School Library Pack, and shortlisted for several regional awards. It won the Redhill Academy Trust Book Award. Her latest book Between Sea and Sky has been shortlisted for the Teach Primary Book Awards 2021.

Book before the end of October for a 20% discount!

Jeevani Charika

Jeevani Charika (“For the record, it’s pronounced Jeev-uh-nee.”) writes women’s fiction, usually featuring heroines of colour. “A Convenient Marriage” was shortlisted for the RNA Contemporary Romance Novel in 2020.

She also writes contemporary romantic comedy with a hint of British cynicism under the pen name Rhoda Baxter. Jeevani writes insightful guides on writing and publishing including “How to Write Romantic Comedy” (with Jane Lovering) and “Getting Published is Just the Begining.”

Jeevani describes herself as “a former scientist, a fan of Lego, an embarrassing mum, a part time geek (see ’embarrassing mum’) and a very short person.”

At the festival she’ll be sharing what she’s learned about the psychology of fiction, how to write romantic comedy, and the difference between traditional and self publishing.

Book early for the best discounts! Super early bird ends on Oct 31st!

Daisy Tate

Welcome to the Festival, @DaisyTate (who also writes as @AnnieOneilBooks) is joining us to talk about the psychology of fiction.

Her fiction journey began with Mills & Boon Medical Romances and now includes a jolly holiday book and two women’s fiction books. She also raises cows and bees!

Book early for the best discounts!