Louise Allan’s first novel, The Sisters’ Song, has become a bestseller for Allen & Unwin, Australia’s leading independent publisher.  Marie-Elsa Bragg’s novel, Towards Mellbreak (Chatto & Windus, Penguin) has been shortlisted for the Writers’ Guild Best First Novel Award and selected as a 2017 Book of the Year in The New Statesman. Both Marie-Elsa and Zillah Bowes will be reading at this year’s Hay-on-Wye Literary Festival in May – one festival, two Freefallers!

Meanwhile, Demelza Carlton’s fortieth novel, Blow: Three Little Pigs Retold, has garnered over 150 reviews on Amazon, in 97% of which it was given more than 3 stars. David Harrison’s “Jenny Parker” thriller series, begun at Poulstone Court, has been picked up by Endeavour Press, the UK’s “youngest, most dynamic and innovative publishing company”.

Elisabeth Hanscombe’s memoir, The Art of Disappearing (Glass House Books) was recently launched in Melbourne, to acclaim. Geoff Mead’s memoir, Gone in the Morning (Jessica Kingsley) is subtitled “A Writer’s Journey of Bereavement” and chronicles his life after the death of his wife, Chris Seeley. His story, Bear Child, created for Chris when she was dying, is about to be released by Floris as a children’s book, beautifully illustrated by Sanne Dufft. (Chris, who introduced Geoff to Freefall, is sorely missed by everyone who knew her, and it is a comfort to have her commemorated in these inspired and inspiring ways.)

Fran Turner’s short story, “Rotten Tomato”, started two years ago at Maryholme, has been published by the Irish online journal, Dodging the Rain  . And Kelly Watt has signed on with Megan Beadle, of the Beadle Literary Agency, to agent her absorbing new young adult novel, set in India.

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