MLF Header Image Previous Festivals 2019 - Previous Festivals

Minehead Literary Festival – postponed from April 2020 

Fact is the New Fiction –

Writing in a post truth world


Margaret Drabble

Telling Stories and Telling Lies: A post-fiction world

Margaret Drabble talking about storytelling, telling stories, and the shifting boundaries of fact and fiction

Sam Angus

Historical Events as Inspiration

Sam Angus talking about the use of real historical events as the starting point for her writing and how a historical setting affects the way she writes the story

Hazel Prior

Harps and Penguins

With harp accompaniment, Hazel was to talk about the inspirations behind her two books Ellie and the Harp Maker, which is set on Exmoor, and Away with the Penguins, due to be published in March

Kipper Williams

Talking Cartoons

A childhood spent drawing footballers and caricaturing teachers eventually led to a career facing the daily challenge of creating visual jokes about politicians, pop stars, the royal family and pheasants. Kipper Williams will be spilling the beans (and the ink) about the life of a cartoonist, as well as doing some live drawing and showing examples of his work

David Parker

Laurie Lee – Down in the Valley – The Lost Recordings
An Illustrated talk

Reflections on love, landscape, writing, poetry, childhood, music and much more from the voice of one of the great English writers of the last century

Lionel Ward

Brendon Books 30 years on

Lionel Ward recounts his experiences as a bookseller of more than 30 years at Brendon Books in Taunton

Minehead Literary Festival 2019

Minehead Literary Festival 2019 took place on Saturday April 27 at the Methodist Hall, Minehead, featuring presentations by four leading writers with ties to the area who explored the importance of place in their writing.


Speaking at the 2019 festival was one of the country’s foremost writers of novels and short stories Tessa Hadley, winner of the 2018 Edge Hill Short Story Prize and author of critically-acclaimed novels Clever GirlThe London Train, The Past and Late in the Day.

Tessa Hadley was joined by writer and bird-watcher Tim Dee, whose latest book Landfill is about how rubbish tips sustain birdlife, and Pamela Holmes, best-selling author of The Huntingfield Paintress and Wyld Dreamers and winner of the Jane Austen Short Story Award in 2014.

Popular local writer and ‘the best contemporary writer of pony stories around’ Victoria Eveleigh gave a special illustrated presentation about how farming on Exmoor inspired her Katy’s Ponies stories.

Tessa Hadley

MLF Tessa Hadley 2019 Home Page - Previous Festivals

Pamela Holmes

MLF Pamela Holmes 2019 Home Page - Previous Festivals

Victoria Eveleigh

MLF Victoria Eveleigh 2019 - Previous Festivals

Art Exhibition

As part of the 2019 Minehead Literary Festival, an art exhibition was organised at the Regal Theatre and at Toucan Wholefoods. The art exhibition focused on the importance of place, the theme of the literary festival, and featured work by accomplished local artists Jo Minoprio, Leo Davey and Pauline Clyde, who are well known for capturing a strong sense of place in their depiction of local scenes.

Jo Minoprio

Pauline Clyde

Leo Davey

Short Story Competition

Short Story Competition: 16+ years old

Theme: Minehead: Gateway to Exmoor

The winner in the adult section, who wishes only to be known as Ms L Robinson, won with a story entitled ‘Minexmagicorland’. Entrants were invited to write no more than 500 words of prose or poetry.

To view Ms L Robinson’s winning piece, click here.

For children, the competition was facilitated by West Somerset Academies Trust, supported by Café Write.

Short Story Competition: 5-8 years old

Theme: The Magic Train

The winner in the 5-8 year old child section was Rhys Norman. Entrants were invited to write no more than 250 words of illustrated prose or poetry.

To view Rhys Norman’s winning piece, click here.

Short Story Competition: 9-15 years old

Theme: The Day All The Teachers Disappeared

The winner in the 9-15 year old child section was Isaac Blazey. Entrants were invited to write no more than 500 words of prose or poetry.

To view Isaac Blazey’s winning piece, click here.

Winners were announced at Minehead Literary Festival on April 27, and the winning entries were published in the West Somerset Free Press and displayed in Minehead library.


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