Murderous Medway Panel 3 – Storybuilders

21st September 2019

Panel 3

Guy Fraser-Sampson, Vicky Newham and Linda Regan ponder whether their writing processes make them an architect, an archaeologist or an alchemist.

Guy Fraser-Sampson, previously best known for his Mapp and Lucia novels, which were featured on Radio 4 and optioned by BBC television, is the creator of The Hampstead Murders series, which currently runs to five books, with a sixth on the way.

His series defies any easy classification since they are contemporary police procedurals but written in the spirit of the Golden Age. Neither cosy nor noir, they have been described as intelligent, quirky, elegant, and as “reading like a love letter to the detective novel”. With picturesque Hampstead serving as a constant backdrop, they have also been called “the next Morse”.

Find Guy at Urbane Publications 

Passionate about great stories and fascinated by human behaviour, Vicky Newham’s writing has psychology at its heart.

The DI Rahman novels are gripping detective novels which offer readers a compelling puzzle alongside a window onto contemporary life in multi-cultural East London. Maya faces daily challenges yet it’s her empathy, determination and instinct which make her a brilliant cop.

Turn a Blind Eye is the first in the DI Rahman series of novels and the second, Out of the Ashes, was published in May 2019. Vicky has other novels and non-fiction in development.

Find Vicky at 

Linda Regan will be familiar to you as a successful actor of stage, screen and radio, appearing as April in the hugely popular Hi De Hi sitcom, among many other high profile shows. Writing for many years, Linda’s big break came with winning the Creme de la Crime publishing contract in 2007.

Her first book, Behind You, was published the next year, and two more followed, before Linda moved to Accent publishers, and published a further two books. Linda has just completed her sixth crime novel and is busy with the seventh. 

Find Linda at  

Click here for individual panel tickets or an all day pass.


Murderous Medway Panel 1 – Location, Location, Location

21st September 2019

Panel 1

Elly Griffiths, William Shaw and Lesley Thomson discuss the settings of their novels and how a place can become just as much a character as the heroes.

Elly Griffiths wrote four novels under her own name (Domenica de Rosa) before turning to crime with The Crossing Places, the first novel featuring forensic archaeologist Dr Ruth Galloway. 

The Crossing Places won the Mary Higgins Clark award and three novels in the series have been shortlisted for the Theakstons Crime Novel of the Year. The Stone Circle (Ruth #11) was published in February 2019 and was a Sunday Times Top Ten Bestseller. 

Elly also writes the Brighton Mysteries, set in the theatrical world of the 1950s. In 2016 Elly was awarded the CWA Dagger in the Library for her body of work. Her first standalone mystery, The Stranger Diaries, was a Richard and Judy book club selection and was the Times Crime Novel of the Year 2018. She has also recently published a children’s crime novel, A Girl Called Justice.

Find Elly at

William Shaw’s latest book Deadland has been long-listed for the CWA Gold Dagger and the Theakston’s Old Peculiar Crime Novel of The Year and was picked as one of the Sunday Times Summer Reads of 2019. 

Set in Dungeness, his crime series featuring DS Alexandra Cupidi, grew out of his standalone crime novel The Birdwatcher, hailed by The Sun as “a contender for thriller of the year” and praised by Peter May as “the most gripping book I’ve read in years.” The first novel in the series, Salt Lane, is currently in development for TV.

Before becoming a crime writer, William Shaw was an award-winning music journalist and the author of several non-fiction books including Westsiders, about a year spent with the young men of South Central Los Angeles, and A Superhero For Hire, a compilation of columns in the Observer Magazine.

Find William at

Lesley Thomson’s first novel, Seven Miles From Sydney, came out in 1987 when it made  the City Limits top ten best books.  In 1990, she worked with actor Sue Johnston on her semi-autobiographical book, Hold Onto The Messy Times.

While reading for an MA in English Literature at Sussex University, Lesley wrote A Kind of Vanishing. It won the People’s Book prize for fiction in 2010.

A guest tutor on the Creative Writing and Publishing MA at West Dean, Lesley also runs a crime-writing short course with top crime writer Elly Griffiths, and leads workshops and master classes on writing crime novels.

Lesley is author of the best-selling The Detective’s Daughter series, featuring Stella Darnell (MD of Clean Slate Cleaning Services) and Jack Harmon, driver on London Underground’s District Line. Oh, and not forgetting Stanley the poodle.

Find Lesley at

Click here to book individual panel tickets or a pass for the whole day.

April Write Then Socialise

WTS April

April’s Write Then Socialise will take place during our annual Terry Pratchett celebration, The Turtle Moves, from 10am-1pm in Rochester Community Hub cafe.

The workshops will be in Room 11 at the Rochester hub, and parents who wish to write while their children are crafting are welcome in there instead. The Juvenile Crafters’ Guild runs from 10.30am-12.30pm

We’re also delighted that writer Kerry Hancock is joining us in Room 11 between 11am-12pm. Born and raised in Medway, her life long dream of becoming an author has been realised with the release of her first book ‘The Task’ due this year. A fantasy adventure for young and old, it’s the first in a trilogy.

Kerry will share her story of how she was picked up by her publisher and do a Q&A on the publishing process.

A World Building Workshop using examples from the Discworld will follow between 1.30-3.30pm. See here for details.