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North Yorkshire author supporting community library
A NORTH Yorkshire author is to hold a book signing at a community-run library.
Former Stokesley School teacher Jan Hunter will be at Great Ayton Discovery Centre on the afternoon of Saturday, August 31, to promote her debut novel, My Two Lives.
The story is a supernatural thriller, which tells the story of Jill, a comprehensive school teacher, who when taking a book from the shelves of a history cupboard, finds herself on the streets of Victorian England.
Mrs Hunter, a former head of drama at Stokesley School, has set her novel in Castle Howard, renamed Castle Beaumont in the book.
She gave up her job in 2008 to concentrate on writing, supported by part-time work as a drama examiner.
Mrs Hunter said winning a short story competition run by The Northern Echo in 2005 gave her the confidence to devote herself to writing.
Her research also involved undergoing past-life therapy. The therapy involves people undergoing hypnosis to access memories from former lives. She said the exercise was to make the book as credible as possible.
Simon Jackson, a trustee at the Discovery Centre, said they were delighted that Jan had included Great Ayton in her book signing schedule.
In addition to funding from Great Ayton parish council and North Yorkshire County council, the centre needs to raise £10,000 a year to stay open. Mr Jackson said events like this helped encourage people to use the centre.
He said: “Recognition from visiting authors encourages centre users to read new books, and our volunteers to continue giving their time to enable them to do so.
“And who knows – it might even inspire a few of our members to have a go at writing their own novel!”
Jan, who has previously written short stories, is now working on the sequel to My Two Lives, which is also set in Castle Howard.
As well as housing the village library, Great Ayton Discovery Centre, a registered charity, also sells a wide range of donated books, local crafts and works of art.
The book signing will take place between 2pm and 4pm.
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