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Litfest opens the 2021 local festival calendar

Lancaster’s 42nd Annual Literature Festival returns on the 12th – 21st March 2021 with a bit of a twist! Having had to cancel the 2020 festival due to Covid, Litfest has bounced back with an innovative and totally online programme, full of events, activities and ideas, that will be accessible to more people than ever before.

In recognition of the tough time everyone has been having, Litfest will not be charging for tickets but actively seeking donations. Litfest 2021 offers four new and ambitious projects, supported by public funding from Arts Council England, that will engage audiences all over the region.

The Litfest Big Read (2 reading challenges) - How We Live Now (6 documentary films of local lives) - How We Live Next (4 talks and a panel discussion with live Q&A on life after Covid) - New Writing Northwest (4 workshops in 4 different genres for emerging writers)

Everyone from age 11 to 111 is invited to join The Big Read Challenge, by registering online at www.litfest.org.

Boy, Everywhere by A.M. Dassu (suitable for ages 11-14) follows the journey of Sami, driven by war from his comfortable life in Damascus, across the sea to Europe, and eventually to a struggle for survival in Manchester. It is a story that reminds that our fortunes, too, could change from one minute to the next.

Best-selling author Matt Haig’s The Midnight Library is for all readers from 15 up. This funny, moving story of a young woman who gets the chance to live as she might have done had she made different choices and so settle her regrets, sparks real imagination and hope.

The two writers championing the campaign, which is supported by Lancashire Libraries, will talk about their work on Friday 12th March at 6.00pm (A.M. Dassu) and 7.30pm (Matt Haig). Each event will be followed by a live online Q&A. Everyone who registers to take up the Litfest Big Read challenge will automatically be entered into a prize draw for which there will be three prizes in each age category: three paperback books (up to a total value of £30) and three free passes to Litfest events in 2022. For more information about how to get involved with The Litfest Big Read Challenge or to book a place at one of the online events, please visit www.litfest.org

In addition to all these new ideas, the very popular Poetry Day, Fiction conversations, Nature talks, and Illustration and Storytelling events, feature as strongly as ever.

The 42nd Lancaster Literature Festival runs from Friday 12th - Sunday 21st March 2021. Beyond Radio, the Litfest media partner, will be running a series of programmes with material from the festival including a preview on Thursday 4th March at 8pm. You can find out more by visiting the schedule page on the Beyond Radio website which will have further details during the festival period.

Details of all the events and the donation campaign are now available at www.litfest.org. All Litfest events will be available on YouTube for 30 days after the festival ends.

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