Literary festivals and writing fairs - organized by writers themselves - are thriving in Wales currently; a testimony to the idea of writing as community, rather than some sort of love letter a writer pens to themselves.
Brian John, originally from Carmarthen, now living in Newport, Pembs is a fine example of what might be called a Superlocal Writer.
To hear Brian talk of how local readers identify with characters in his Angel Mountain historical saga books, sharing similar experiences and emotions, is to be reminded of how a master storyteller sheds light on the familiar and new insight into where we live. And to learn about him delivering his titles in the back of his car, to local outlets not always known for their book sales, is to be entertained by someone both resourceful and determined.
Brian started his career doing scientific research in Antarctica, then becoming a geography academic at Durham University. As well as writing fiction set locally he's written tourist guides, books of local jokes, walkers' handbooks, and titles on local folklore and traditions. He has an amazing 90 titles to his name, published traditionally, by big publishers and by his own publishing imprint. He enjoys great affection in Welsh Wales by those who've heard him speak - and truly deserves to be regarded as a creative Superlocal Hero.
The good news is you can hear Brian talking at the Llangwmlitfest
http://www.llangwmlitfest.co.uk/programme2 11th - 13th August, where he is doing two talks, one on the Friday evening and one on Sunday afternoon.
MORE SUPERLOCAL WRITERS
While I'm Superlocal Writer spotting, I should mention the excellent news that two West Wales writers are currently on the Guardian's Not The Booker prizelist. Sara Gethin, from Llanelli, is there for her novel 'Not Thomas' https://saragethin.com/ and Alis Hawkins, originally from Ceredigion is there for her historical thriller 'None So Blind' https://alishawkins.co.uk/ .
You can vote for them here: https://www.theguardian.com/books/booksblog/2017/jul/31/not-the-booker-prize-2017-please-vote-on-the-long-long-longlist?CMP=Share_AndroidApp_Tweet#comment-102963690 and we wish both writers best wishes. You need to vote by August 7.
Brian John's website is here: http://www.brianjohn.co.uk/ and Martha Morgan, main character in his Angel series has a website here: http://www.marthamorgan.co.uk/