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James Ellson

Speaker Topics

Sports, Horticulture, General Interest, Other

Locations Covered​



£75 - £150


Short Notice

Profile Bio

James Ellson was a police officer in the UK for 15 years, starting in London and finishing as a Detective Inspector at Moss Side in Manchester. When he left the police he started writing, and has been writing ever since. He is also a keen mountaineer.

His debut novel The Trail was published in 2020, and the sequel Cold Dawn in August.

James lives in the Peak District with his wife, and manages their smallholding, which includes bees and an orchard.

James gives variety of talks, subjects including crime writing, smallholding and sustainabaility, and mountaineering.

Talk Description

The Long Road to Publication

The Long Road to Publication - A talk about my twin careers of detective and crime writer, and why and how it took ten years to publish my debut novel The Trail

Other Talks

• Real Cop, Literary Cop – A talk about my twin careers of detective and crime writer, including an analysis of the components of crime fiction (plot to point of view to protagonist)
• Five Hours Up, Five Hours Down: Soloing the Matterhorn – the story of my repeated attempts to climb it, my ascent and the terrible postscript
• Losing Fingers on Ama Dablam: Climbing the 6,812 metre peak known as ‘the Matterhorn of the Himalaya’
• (from autumn 2023) From double-glazing to crime fiction: how to sell a book (or anything) in a crowded marketplace
• (from summer 2023) The (Apple) Trees & The Bees – symbiotic relationships between apple trees, honeybees, and humans
• Living Sustainably - Is It Really Possible? Tips for eating and living more sustainably in order to combat global warming.
• I Ate My Last Herefordshire Russet This Morning – An Introduction To Growing Apple Trees (inc. a demonstration of whip and tongue grafting)
• 6 Lessons from the Winter Smallholding – (Winter / Christmas special) including, how to make cassis; turkey-naming; the story of the Christmas Pippin apple
• (from winter 2023) Can Perennial Vegetables Save the Planet? Growing alternatives to time-consuming annuals, including sourcing plants and propagation.

Recent reviews
‘a brilliant speaker’ (Bury U3A)
‘tremendous’ (Oliver Harris, course lead for the crime elective at Manchester Metropolitan University)
‘highly engaging . . . a session to repeat in the future’ (Leicester)
‘bang up to date and topical’ (Reddish)
‘thought-provoking and superbly presented’ (Denton)
‘Most of our talks leave us brimming with information, but your talk left many people challenged, too.’ (Baslow)
‘excellent talk’ (Buxton)

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