About - Talks

MK Lit Fest

Am I a one-hit wonder? Photo by E Photography

‘Katie, we just wanted you to know we loved every moment spent with you.’ EW

I have given talks in settings as large as a Florida concert hall, and as small as a Suffolk bookshop.

I have appeared at some of the UK’s best-loved literary festivals, in towns, cities, and by the sea. On one occasion a volunteer from a brand-new festival asked me how the Difficult Second Novel was going…? The result was a commission for an original performance lecture, a unique experience that I shall never forget.

I’ve found myself talking to readers in a world-class dance venue; overlooked by a medieval cathedral; and in a suburb of Paris. I have been a fish out of water on a distinguished science panel discussing STEM in the next thirty years. I’ve been interviewed about my work for Channel 4, and a few times on BBC Radio 4, including for a beautiful feature called Girl Reading that’s still available as a podcast.

CASE panel

Campaign for Science and Engineering (CaSE), 30th anniversary event. 14/11/16/ Senate House London. From L-R: Phil Smith; Professor Jonathan Haskel; Dr Sarah Main; Katie Ward; Professor Lynn Rothschild; Dr Adam Kucharski.

My favourites topics include art, writing, and Shakespeare. I’m happy to chat with an audience, but I prefer going deeper when I’m allowed to. I know how lucky I am to be a fulltime artist – of course I do – but I don’t believe in giving a false impression of what this means in real life. (So if you are looking for a showbiz author to dazzle you, I’m the wrong person for that.)

If you decide to invite me to your event… then I promise to deliver an insightful and heartfelt presentation. I give my listeners the kind of thought and attention that I would wish to receive.

‘Outstanding! Wonderful insight and enthusiasm.’ G

‘I think it’s fair to say you stole the show!’ SM

‘You spoke directly and opened up your soul in a way that doesn’t happen at traditional lit fests, so we are all touched by your trust in us.’ DN

I can also be called upon to deliver creative writing workshops and masterclasses. I have run successful sessions for young people finding their voice at A level and university; for adults on residential courses; and best of all, I founded Wolsey Writers at New Wolsey Theatre. (I’m biased, obviously.)

‘It was a fantastic visit which made a real impact on the quality of our students’ writing and motivation … we would love you to come back.’ PM

For talks and teaching, please read the FAQs, then email your expression of interest.