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Carmarthen Book Fair 2016

Thompson Authors (Sarada & John) are hosting Carmarthen's first book fair. It takes place October 1st at St. Peter's Civic Hall.

The town of Carmarthen is steeped in literary history – it is home of the Black Book of Carmarthen – the oldest Welsh book.

The Book Fair will have many local authors, there will be workshops, readings and talks, children's story telling hour – all free. Entry to the book fair is free.

The raffle proceeds will be donated to Hywel Dda Health Board – Carmarthen's local hospital – and the MS Society.

Carmarthen Book Fair 2016 – List of participants

Image: poster

Guest appearance – Professor Menna Elfyn renowned Welsh poet and Director of the University of Wales Trinity Saint David's Creative Writing Programme.

  • John Thompson – Author.
  • Sarada Thompson – Author.
  • Sally Spedding – Author.
  • John Nicholl – Author.
  • Wendy White – Author.
  • Anthony Jones – Writer & Poet.
  • Dominic Williams – Writer, poet & Publisher.
  • Julie McGowan – Author.
  • Lisa Shambrook – Author.
  • Graham Watkins – Author.
  • Judith Arnopp – Author.
  • Sue Moules – Author.
  • Kathy Miles – Author.
  • Wendy Steele – Author.
  • Carol Lovekin – Author.
  • Lazarus Carpenter – Author.
  • Christoph Fischer – Author.
  • Thorne Moore – Author.
  • Sarah Jane Butfield – Author.
  • Greg Howes – Author.
  • Kate Murray – Author.
  • Judith Barrow – Author.
  • Nathan Amin – Author.
  • Colin Parsons – Author.
  • Kate Glanville – Author.
  • Parthian Books – Publishers.
  • Library of Wales.
  • Waterstones – promoting local independent authors.
  • Llanelli Writer's Circle.
  • Chas Griffin – Author.
  • Hywel Dda Health Charities – Display.
  • MS Society – Display.
  • The Palm Caye, Carmarthen – Refreshments.

Confirmed Raffle Prizes for the Carmarthen Book Fair 2016

Raffle proceeds to Hywel Dda Health Charities and MS Society.

  • Scarlets – Family ticket for 4 people for a Scarlets Guinness Pro 12 match 2016/17.
  • The Plough Inn – Afternoon Tea for two.
  • Folly Farm – two tickets.
  • Dinosaur Park, Tenby – £10 gift voucher.
  • Gwili Steam Railway – one free family ticket.
  • Stradey Park Hotel – Afternoon Tea for two.
  • Manor House Safari Park – 2 prizes:
    1. two child tickets,
    2. two child tickets.
  • Laser Station Carmarthen – 4 × one game vouchers.
  • Marros Riding Centre – £10 off a ride voucher.
  • Marks & Spencer – £10 Voucher.
  • Xcel Bowling, Carmarthen – Voucher for 1hr bowling for 6 people.
  • Ultimate Ballroom, Carmarthen – 2 × 1hr Private lessons (value £40 each) and 4 × children's or adults group lesson vouchers.
  • Llandovery Wool Shop – £10 voucher.
  • Crancs Cyclesport, Carmarthen – £10 Voucher.

Thompson Authors Biographies

John Thompson
Photo of the Thompson authors


(There is also a biography for Sarada Thompson.)

John was born in the district of Eton in 1942, and spent a happy and carefree childhood in the rural setting of Old Windsor. After attending Windsor Grammar School, he went to the University of Aberdeen, graduating in 1965 with an Honours Degree in History. John followed this by reading for an M.A. in American History at the College of William and Mary in Virginia, and happened to be in the United States when both Martin Luther King and Bobby Kennedy were assassinated – tempestuous times!

John taught at a private school in London on his return to the UK, and eventually became side-tracked into Law, reading for an external degree from the University of London and then taking the Bar examinations in 1976. He then spent the next two decades as a practising barrister.

John has always been a voracious reader, devouring many of the classics while still at junior school, and can remember writing stories in his teenage years and reading them to his grandmother, who pretended to be suitably impressed. John has an abiding interest in the human psyche, having studied Psychology as a minor subject in his first degree, while twenty years of practice in divorce and criminal law exposed him to every aspect of the human mind!

John is a keen member of his local writing group, Llanelli Writers' Circle, which provides excellent support and critical analysis. Over the last decade or so he has specialised mainly in short stories, and has won awards from the National Association of Writers' Groups and been short-listed several times in other competitions, notably those contained in Writing Magazine, which John would recommend to any aspiring writer.

From John's early twenties he developed a keen interest in Hindu religion, and regards himself as a practising Hindu, while recognising that all the major religions teach in essence the same values. History shows, however, that religion can be perverted by mankind to justify various objectives, often resulting in acts of barbarity and genocide. On the smaller scale, charlatans may use religion in order to impose their will upon others, whether for sexual gratification, pecuniary reward, or simply the exercise of personal power – and in some cases all three!

The Brindavan Chronicle: Genesis was published in June 2015 – in which a charismatic man uses his charm to bend the will of others to his own purpose. The real interest in such a situation is not that the gullible and guileless can be taken in by such a man, but how they respond when they manage to see through the veil of delusion.

John has recently published Adventures in Time and The Female of the Species and is currently publishing The Brindavan Chronicle: Nemesis.

Sarada Thompson
Photo of the Thompson authors


(There is also a biography for John Thompson.)

Sarada is an Indian artist and writer, resident in the U.K. since 1973 and in Wales since 1990. Born in Singapore she worked as a journalist for local newspapers. When she arrived in London, she looked set to read law, but then spent the next two decades raising a family; writing for the Northampton and Milton Keynes weeklies during this time.

She has exhibited her artwork in various venues in England and Wales and offered story-telling workshops through art, drama and writing in schools and universities; and also art therapy for mental health patients. The Hindu Story-Telling workshops also involved writing, as part of the National Curriculum in schools, colleges and universities.

She was awarded her master's degree in creative writing at Trinity St. David Carmarthen, University of Wales in 2012. Sarada has won awards in mini-tales in the National Association of Writers' Groups, the Travel Award in 2009 and the President's Award in 2010, in the local writers' circle and has had a few of her short stories published in both the University's anthology, Shadow Plays, in 2010 and more recently in the local Athena 10. Recently she has been short-listed in the memoir section in 2015 and historical fiction this year in NAWG.

At present she has completed the first draft of her novels Outcaste and Work-in-progress, publishing the latter as The 'Neem Tree. She is also working on her fourth picture-book, Durga.

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Posted by: Kevin Machin Date: September 9, 2016 1:08 pm
Categories: Events Tags: past
Comments: 1 – permitted Article: 5009 – public
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Sally Spedding: February 4, 2017 5:54 pm
Fascinating to read of John and Sarada's very interesting backgrounds in more detail, here. Their Book Fair in Carmarthen was a tremendous success. A power couple! Generous and modest. Am proud to know them.
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