The Travelling Talesman – 9th May

The first Rochester LitFest event of the year!

Rochester Literature Festival


As a warm up for Rochester Lit Fest 2014, we are pleased to present a night of storytelling at the Good Intent in Rochester on the 9th May. The Travelling Talesman has toured the country from Penzance to York, for feasts, festivals and fun since the early nineties

The Talesman tells stories of Norse Gods, Celtic mysteries, clever girls and Dragon Slayers, medieval mayhem, giants, goblins and halloween horrors. Originally specialising in Northern European tales, his stories are now drawn from all over the world.

At the Good Intent, The Talesman will present ‘Away With The Fairies.’ Tales of the magical and mischievous Small Folk… and when they were not so small delving in to their origins as the godlike Tuatha De Danann.

Tickets are £7 per person or £8 on the night. Doors open at 7pm.

Tickets are available at:

Find out more about the Travelling Talesman at:

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Paintings, books, carvings & Saints – Author Truda Thurai reveals Rochester’s Treasures

From the pen of the wonderful History Magpie …

CoverDoing historical research is a bit like falling down Alice’s rabbit hole – you have no idea where you’re going to end up.  You can go round in circles on the trail of an elusive fact or, as in author Truda Thurai’s case, follow an intriguing hook and end up writing something entirely unexpected.

Truda’s first novel, The Devil Dancers, is set in Ceylon , now known as Sri Lanka, so when she discovered that the country is also referred to within Charles Dickens’ unfinished novel The Mystery of Edwin Drood, she was intrigued.  Once on the trail of the connection, however, Truda was sent on another journey entirely and ended up writing a collection of short stories entitled Barley Bread and Cheese.  She kindly dropped by the Magpies nest to explain how it happened…

Hello Truda, please push the twigs aside and make yourself comfortable.  Now…

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One Nite Alone … with George Clinton and Prince

I’m really not jealous much at all … at all, I tell you … #funkedoff #onenation

The Music of Business

I was privileged and astonished to be invited to a private event for 35 people with George Clinton, the inventor of P-Funk, Funkadelic, Parliament, whose influence has transcended generations, musical genres, class, creed and credentials.  With influences spreading from the Red Hot Chilli Peppers to Joss Stone.  Thank you so much to Lois Acton at Urban Unlimited for the invite.

I’d caught the train up to Shoreditch House in Bethnal Green on Saturday – the first time I’d ever been to Bethnal Green, although I quoted it in my spoof hard rock song on economics Fiscal Cliff, so there was a piece of serendipity!  I was expecting a huge venue with a massive audience.  Imagine my surprise when I was standing in the foyer with 4 others and Mr C comes in and casually remarks “Prince – what a great T Shirt” whilst shaking my hand.

George Clinton - Godfather of Funk, Soul, Psychedelia George Clinton –…

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Creative writing and heroic adventures

The last weekend of the Rochester Literature Festival approaches!

Rochester Literature Festival

We’re halfway through but there’s still lots more to do!

Whether you’re an experienced writer or a fledging, stretching those itchy pen fingers for the first time, we have three opportunities coming up for you to hone your skills and find inspiration from like minded people. You’ll find links to the booking forms highlighted.

Firstly, Write Around Town, led by our friends Barry and Sam of ME4Writers. Join them on a tour of our fair city, and let its stories unlock your creativity with creative writing exercises.

Next, the Potlatch – bring something to the table. Pen(s) and paper are a must, together with your favourite book, or part thereof, that you feel interprets our Other Worlds, Other Voices theme.

Our final workshop is led by Philip Kane. In From Sorcery to Starships, Philip will help us to craft and explore a world of our own creation that can…

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Other Worlds, Other Voices Festival: A summary of events

The full programme for the Rochester Literature Festival ‘Other Worlds, Other Voices’. Individual events can be booked, or a Festival Pass that gets you into everything for less than booking the events individually. Fantastic value, if I say so myself 🙂

Rochester Literature Festival

Three award-winning writers feature in our very first Rochester Literature Festival, an eclectic and imaginative ten-day programme of events inspired by the overarching theme, ‘Other Worlds, Other Voices’. The festival begins on 3rd October to coincide with National Poetry Day and runs to 13th October.

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The festival opens with multi-award winning, Guyana-born writer Maggie Harris reading from a selection of her moving, resonant work in celebration of Black History Month in the first of two events in association with Medway Libraries. Maggie Harris is now based in the county of Kent and she has won countless accolades for her work, both at home and abroad. She will also be leading a participatory poetry workshop on Saturday 5th October.

In the evening of 5th October, Rochester-based Sarah Hehir, who won the 2013 BBC Writer’s Prize for her radio play ‘Bang Up’, first broadcast on Radio 4 in August, will attend a…

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