Online book festival My Virtual Literary Festival (MyVLF) will launch a series of new festivals based on different genres later this year.
The site, which won the BookTech Start-up award at The Bookseller's FutureBook Awards last year, will hold festivals based on genres including romance, crime and thriller and historical fiction.
Writers Gwyn GB, Deborah Carr and Kelly Clayton founded MyVLF in 2018 to combat the cost, time and environmental impact of travelling to literary festivals, launching with authors including Peter James, Cecelia Ahern and Dorothy Koomson. Authors are interviewed in an online theatre and answer readers’ questions live, following their talks, in a chat room.
Clayton said: "We are going to kick the year off with a romance festival on 15th February, followed by a Crime & Thriller festival on 28th March, Historical Fiction on 6th June, Shiver Fest—a horror and psychological thriller festival on 31st October, and a Christmas book festival on 6th December. We will also be repeating our very popular Book Blogger Awards and launching a writing competition and a festival for readers who want to have a go themselves. More dates and festivals will be added."
The festival also plans to introduce networking sessions at the end of each event to enable authors and readers to mix and talk in the chatroom. MyVLF.com looks like a real venue with a theatre, café and even an exhibition hall where readers can view author and publisher stands. It uses a combination of a virtual environment with a 2-D website.
Co-founder Deborah Carr added MyVLF will be expanding its offering to authors in 2020. She said: "In addition to the opportunities to talk at festivals, or offer their novel to our Book Group as a monthly read, we have had interest from publishers who are looking to hire the venue itself for their own events at a fraction of the cost of a real venue, and with the potential of a truly global audience. We are looking forward to hosting some publisher specific festivals in the New Year."