Adam Farrer in conversation with Jenn Ashworth at Blackwell’sSarah-Clare Conlon, Literature Editor
Like place-writing, then this could be one for you, as Manchester-based writer and The Real Story co-organiser Adam Farrer launches his debut book Cold Fish Soup, winner of the 2021 NorthBound Book Award, at a reading and in conversation event with Portico Prize-shortlisted author and memoirist Jenn Ashworth.
Manchester-based writer and The Real Story co-organiser Adam Farrer launches his debut book Cold Fish Soup, winner of the 2021 NorthBound Book Award, at a reading and in conversation event with Portico Prize-shortlisted author and memoirist Jenn Ashworth.
Described as “a clear-eyed, unsentimental and often funny account of small-town life, from male mental health and economic decline to community, swimming and burlesque-dancing pensioners”, the memoir, published at the start of August by Saraband Books, offers “an affectionate look at a place and its inhabitants, and the ways in which they can shape and influence someone, especially of an impressionable age. Adam’s account explores what it means to love and be shaped by a place that is under threat, and the hope – and hilarity – that can be found in community”. The book will be available to purchase on the night and Adam will be signing copies after the reading.
The blurb says: “Before Adam Farrer’s family relocated to Withernsea in 1992, he’d never heard of the Holderness coast. The move represented one thing to Adam: a chance to leave the insecurities of early adolescence behind. And he could do that anywhere. What he didn’t know was how much he’d grow to love the quirks and people of this faded Yorkshire resort, in spite of its dilapidated attractions and retreating clifftops. While Adam documents the minutiae of small-town life, he lays bare experiences that are universal […] and his compulsion towards the sea.”
Adam Farrer is a writer and editor who has appeared at festivals and events including Manchester Literature Festival and the Northern Lights Writers’ Conference, and is taking part in the online Portico Library series Rewriting The North, talking about memoir with Catherine Simpson on 15 September. His work has been published in the anthology Test Signal – “a ground-breaking anthology of the best contemporary northern writing from Dead Ink and Bloomsbury, showcasing the wealth of literary talent in the North of England” – and he edits the creative non-fiction journal The Real Story.
Preston-born Jenn Ashworth is the author of novels including A Kind of Intimacy, Cold Light, Fell and Ghosted: A Love Story, which was shortlisted for the most recent Portico Prize. She has also written a memoir, Notes Made While Falling. She lives in Lancaster with her husband, son and daughter, and lectures in Creative Writing at the University of Lancaster.