I should have been taking part in the Abergavenny Writing Festival today. Sadly, because of the coronavirus, it’s been cancelled, which is great shame. I love the area so much I decided to set Storm Hound there.
Instead, here are ten things I love about Abergavenny.
1. The mountains. The town in set on a flat area of land in the middle of the Black Mountains. Stand in the town and pretty much any way you look, you’ll be looking at a mountain. I have it on good authority that the Blorenge Mountain has three foothills, which if you squint a bit, look like the paw of a giant dog, or maybe a stormhound.
2. The market. The green market tower is another thing you can see from pretty much anywhere. Inside you’ll find a great selection of food and other bits and pieces.
3. The castle. I’ve always loved castles. Abergavenny Castle has a long history and last time I visited it had some amazing sculptures in the grounds.
4. The sheep. There’s something inherently amusing about sheep, I feel. The way they stand about staring at people as if they know something we don’t.
5. The shops. I’ve been lucky to have two book launches in Waterstones. I’m a little too fond of the Marches cheese shop and I tend to panic buy some over every cheese whenever I get the chance to visit.
6. The food festival. There seems to be a food theme happening in this list, but the September Food Festival really is worth a visit.
7. The cafes. Yes, there really is a food theme going on now, but there are lots of little restaurants and cafes which are great to hide away with a laptop and do some writing.
8. The SCBWI group. The local branch of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators has been going for a few years. There’s a monthly meeting and sometimes I’ll make the trip up from Cardiff just to catch up with these lovely friendly people.
9. The people. I’ve visited quite a few of the primary schools for author visits, and I have some tremendous writer friends in the town. It really is a great, creative community.
10. The Abergavenny Writing Festival. Of course. Hope to see you next year!