Novel Nights

A new event to support writers, is coming to Exeter this autumn.   

We chatted to the founder of Novel Nights, Grace Palmer. 

What’s in the programme? 

Debut novelist and creative writing lecturer, Ben Smith is our first guest author on October 21st at Exeter Phoenix. He’ll

discuss how writers can use landscape and setting in fiction so it’s more than a mere backdrop to plot.
Ben’s debut novel, Doggerland, is a compelling tale of loneliness and survival, archaeological remains and rusting turbines, set against the backdrop of a water-filled landscape. Ben lectures in creative writing at Plymouth University specialising in environmental literature. 

How can writers get involved?   

Send us your stories and novel extracts for a chance to feature in our Writers’ Showcase. Three writers will be chosen to read their work in front of the friendly audience. Submissions guidelines are on the Novel Nights website and submissions close on October 5th.

Who are the team behind Novel Nights Exeter? 

Devon-based writers, David Lloyd and Pippa Marriott, met on the MA in Creative Writing at Exeter University and approached Grace Palmer to bring Novel Nights to Exeter.
David says “We love what Novel Nights has done in Bristol and Bath. We thought why not here too? Exeter has a thriving arts community but we wanted to help create a showcase for writers.”

Pippa and David at Exeter Phoenix

Grace added: “Writers already travel from Devon to our talks and masterclasses in Bristol and Bath, so I knew there was a demand. I’ve been delighted by the positive response. We’ve sold a quarter of the tickets in the first four days. David, Pippa and I are running this event as a trial, so if it’s a success we’ll carry on.”

How did Novel Nights start?

“Six years ago, I was a frustrated writer wondering why all the best events happened in London. I set up Novel Nights to deliver high quality writing events, with the focus on learning from established authors and giving a platform to prose writers in the Showcase. It’s become a fabulous writers network, so useful when you’re working on long projects like a novel.  
Since those early days Novel Nights has programmed talks by best-selling authors, literary agents, guest authors, literary consultants and publishers. Over 150 writers have read their novels or short stories. I now work with Charlotte Packer in Bristol and Colette Hill in Bath delivering events. We received an Arts Council grant this year to develop the team, run masterclasses and expand into Bath. (though Exeter isn’t part of that bid). 

Where can I get tickets? 

Book in advance via Novel Nights The way tickets are selling do it sooner rather than later as the capacity at Exeter Phoenix is 40 seats.

Listings Information

Finding your story through landscape with Ben Smith
Mon 21 October 2019 at Exeter Phoenix, Bradninch Place, Gandy Street, Exeter
7pm – 9.00pm. Tickets via