STATEMENT RE CHIPLITFEST 2021
Following the wretched but inevitable decision to cancel ChipLitFest 2020, we have to acknowledge the reality of not being able to guarantee the viability of ChipLitFest 2021 so, with very heavy hearts, there will be no weekend Festival in April 2021.
We are heartbroken not to be able to deliver the Festival for a second year running but we have to abide by the rules, of course, and not risk the health of any authors, audience, volunteers and the community.
We do hope to be able to continue our work in the community as soon as schools are open and happy to receive visits from authors. We also plan to bring you live literary events in the autumn when we can once again bring the best contemporary authors to our wonderful town.
The sixth ChipLitFest short story competition is now live.
First prize: £500
Judge: literary agent, Isobel Dixon
Sponsor: HW Fisher
Deadline: Sunday 16 May 2021
Entry fee: £5 for stories up to 2,500 words. £8 for stories up to 5,000 words
Free entries are available for low income writers, full details: click here
Full details: click here
Competition rules: click here
All three winning stories from the 2020 competition are featured here: the winner is Ice Cream Sunday by Jupiter Jones, second place is Bird, Man, Dog by Sean Baker and third place is Dirty Boy by James Hancock.
The top 25 chartered accountancy firm, HW Fisher, is joining the festival's list of loyal and generous supporters to become the new sponsor for our short story competition. We are really thrilled about this new working relationship with HW Fisher, it's a perfect match between festival and business as HW Fisher specialises in advising authors and journalists, helping them to manage their finances. They are keen litfest attenders and we look forward to welcoming the team to Chipping Norton as soon as possible.
HW Fisher's generous sponsorship means that we are now in a position to offer free entries to those writers on a low income. Details here.
We are delighted to have been successful in our application to Chipping Norton Town Council for local voluntary bodies. We will use the grant to support our work in Chipping Norton Partnership schools, it will allow us to offer extra author workshops in order to guarantee socially distanced events. Our programme of community outreach work has always included author visits to all primary, secondary and non-mainstream schools in the area and as soon as we are able, we look forward to making sure local children and young people have the chance to work with some of the best authors and illustrators. The grant will mean that we can continue to make sure that these events are as accessible to as many young people as possible.
Whilst we can't bring authors to Chipping Norton, we can at least bring their books to you. We are very proud of always featuring debut writers at the festival; Louise Hare was due to be appear at ChipLitFest 2020 and we want to shine the spotlight on her wonderful historical fiction, This Lovely City.
Published by Harper Collins and just out in paperback, This Lovely City, is inspiring and hopeful historical fiction with a really strong sense of time and place, recounting a story of Black lives in postwar London.
It explores the experiences of the Windrush generation in 1940s and 1950s London, combining the glamour and jazz of Soho’s music halls with a look at the simmering racial tensions, as a horrifying incident threatens to tear the fragile communities apart.
The book was featured on BBC2’s Between The Covers book club and longlisted for the HWA Debut Crown, and Louise was included in the Observer’s ‘best debuts of 2020’ round-up. Most recently, the book was selected by both Abi Dare and Adam Kay as one of their books of the year for The Guardian.
Directors: Martin Neild (chair), Penny Chapman, Helen Dance, Cathy Horlick, Jo Howard, Liz Sich
Registered Charity: 1152866