Follow Northumbria University, Newcastle

Bestselling writer to headline Crime Story 2016

Press release   •   Feb 10, 2016 11:00 GMT

Paula Hawkins, author of The Girl on the Train, will headline this year’s Crime Story festival, delivered in partnership by Northumbria University and New Writing North.

Crime Story is an innovative festival for readers and writers of crime fiction, providing rare access to experts from the fields of forensics, criminology, pathology and law, who reveal and interrogate the facts behind crime fiction.

Appealing to crime readers as well as fans of TV series such as Serial and Making a Murderer, the day-long festival invites audience and experts to pick apart a fictional crime, which will be written by Paula Hawkins. For crime writers, the festival also offers an extraordinary opportunity to challenge and improve the authenticity of their writing, by giving unique access to a wide range of experts in police science, as well as crime writers and publishing industry leaders.

Paula Hawkins (2) - To Embed (1)Paula Hawkins said: "I attended Crime Story in June 2014 on a whim: I thought the concept sounded interesting – a group of crime writers and readers get together to try to solve a fictional murder aided by a handful of experts – detectives, forensic specialists and legal experts. I expected to have an entertaining weekend. I didn’t expect to walk away with ten A4 pages crammed with detailed notes covering all aspects of police procedure, and a head brimming with new ideas.

“Crime Story gives writers the kind of access to senior detectives, blood-spatter experts and forensic psychiatrists that most of us could only dream about. I found it fascinating and invaluable and have been looking forward to the next one ever since, so am absolutely thrilled to have been asked to come up with a murder scenario for this year’s event.”

Northumbria’s Pro Vice-Chancellor (Business and Engagement), Lucy Winskell OBE, said: “I was delighted to hear that international bestselling author Paula Hawkins will be headlining Crime Story 2016 at Northumbria University. Her involvement in this year’s event is hugely exciting news and a real endorsement of this innovative festival’s appeal to writers, readers, academics and professionals in the field.

“Delivered in partnership by Northumbria and New Writing North, Crime Story draws on the University’s teaching and research expertise across criminology, criminal law, forensic science and creative writing, to explore the facts behind the fiction.

“I’m sure Paula will write a fascinating and compelling whodunit for our experts and audience members to investigate during the course of this unique day-long festival.”

Crime Story takes place in Newcastle upon Tyne on Saturday 11 June. The full programme will be announced and tickets released on Thursday 10 March at Crime Story: Portrait of a Criminal, a special event in which two award-winning writers explore the minds of two of the most notorious criminals of recent times. Writers Dan Davies and Andrew Hankinson will discuss the subjects of their work, their own methods and the place of true crime in literary writing. Ticket holders for Portrait of a Criminal: Crime Story will receive £10/£8 off their Crime Story festival ticket price.

Tickets are now available for Crime Story: Portrait of a Criminal on Thursday 10 March by clicking here. Find out more about Crime Story 2016, taking place on Saturday 11 June at Northumbria University at: Northumbria offers courses in a wide range of disciplines related to this special event, including criminology, criminal law, forensic science and creative writing. For more information about studying at Northumbria go to:

Northumbria is a research-rich, business-focused, professional university with a global reputation for academic excellence. To find out more about our courses go to

If you have a media enquiry please contact our Media and Communications team at or call 0191 227 4571.