The Dementia Fiction Festival in Belfast is a two day Festival/Conference hybrid full of performances, conversations and presentations from a mix of academics, writers, carers and people living with dementia who will be exploring how dementia can be presented with honesty, imagination and integrity through performance and the written word.
I am delighted to have been asked to be a panel member for an online discussion exploring the ethics of how we write about dementia. We will discuss issues such as dignity, research and appropriation, and will ask some important questions in regards to how writers can ethically write and record another’s experience. Dr Gemma Carney (QUB) will moderate the interactive discussion and the panel will feature a presentation from Dr Sarah Falcus (Huddersfield), alongside me, there will be input from writer and academic Caleb Klaces (St John York University) and Dublin-based novelist Henrietta McKervey who will read from her 2016 novel The Heart of Everything (Hachette, 2016). The public discussions will be posted on YouTube after the festival, and I'll update this blog with the links as soon as I get them. If you're reading this before 15th September 2021, you can book your free tickets here: https://accidentaltheatre.co.uk/partners/dementia-fiction-festival-2021
It is a great honour for me to have been asked to air my opinions on this important subject in the company of such erudite and respected writers and academics. I will be a pygmy amongst giants, but I know that my input will be respected and valued. I am really looking forward to participating in this stimulating and thought provoking event.