Louth Eye
 A guide to Louth in Lincolnshire since 2004

The 2006 Wolds Words Festival

Freelance journalist Nick Louth

Nick Louth

Competition winner Charlotte Newton

Charlotte Newton

Author Margaret Dickinson

Margaret Dickinson

Kevin Crossley-Holland

Kevin Crossley-Holland

Clive James

Clive James

A display at the Riverhead Farmer's Market

A display at the Riverhead Farmer's Market

Mike Morgan demonstrates farm equipment

Mike Morgan demonstrates farm equipment

A display of old farm tools

A display of old farm tools

23rd October 2006

Louth was the venue for the Wolds Words Festival of reading, writing and performance over the weekend of 19th to the 22nd of October. Writers descended on the town for what proved to be the largest festival yet.

This year Wolds Words enjoyed a lively children's fringe, supported by the Children's Patron, Kevin Crossley-Holland. Children's events included poetry, a spellathon, and workshops, as well as puppets and stories at Louth library. For the first time the Nightingale prize for short fiction was awarded to a young writer in the 11-18 age group.

Headlining this year was Clive James, whose Friday night performance was completely sold out. He was also to be found at Wright's book shop in Little Eastgate, signing copies of his latest work, The North Face of Soho.

In the spirit of providing events to suit all tastes, there were workshops on a wide variety of writing skills and genres. Nick Louth, pictured top left, ran a course on freelancing. Other courses involved poetry, calligraphy, and getting published.

A significant part of this year's festival was a celebration of farming on the Saturday. There were performances from farming writers and displays of farming equipment and photography at the Riverhead theatre. This was accompanied by a farmer's market, held at Riverhead and featuring local produce including stalls of organic food, vegetarian food, and rare breed meats.

On Sunday a number of established writers presented the awards for the creative writing competition. Poet Pat Borthwick presented Rose Bakker with the first prize for Remembering Andrew, whilst Malcolm Carson and Anne Haley achieved the runner-up prizes for their poems.

Daphne Glazer presented the short story competition prizes. She described The Door by Peter Rowe as "a delightful story," and complemented the "excellent command of language" shown in Joan Carlisle's Patricia's Baby. However the first prize went to Charlotte Newton, pictured on the left, for The Door to the City.

"It was subtle and very well sustained", Daphne said. "... I was extremely impressed with it."

Charlotte Newton then went on to read out her winning story about a journey across the USA. The Door to the City is a cleverly constructed and unusually insightful tale with a pleasing twist at the end of it.

The award ceremony was followed by a discussion by festival patron Margaret Dickinson. Margaret discussed her life's work, which is marked this year with the publication of her 21st novel, Pauper's Gold. Her speciality is regional sagas and romances, focusing particularly on the Lincolnshire area. She discussed the meticulous attention to detail that goes into researching her writing, and the tenacity it takes to succeed in this business.

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