Hornby hosts high-school writers' retreat
Visits by authors to schools may not be unusual, but a comprehensive in west London has taken the concept to a new level by getting six writers in at the same time to work solely with boys. Bestselling author Nick Hornby (pictured), war writer James Brabazon and the comedian Richard Herring were among those who took part in the "Write Brothers" event at Villiers High School in Southall. Each writer set their group a task relating to their own style, with thriller writer Peter Grimsdale's group plotting an action story and war journalist Andrew Mueller's planning a Gaza feature. However, Sean Kemp, Downing Street's deputy political head of press, endured a barrage of tricky questions from nine 12-year-olds, including: "Are we winning hearts and minds in Afghanistan?" "It was incredible," Mr Kemp said. "It was like briefing the lobby".
For more on Write Club events, see page 34.