I don’t really have a problem with big literature festivals and have heard some fine and famous writers hold forth in Bath, Cheltenham and elsewhere. Two years ago I even made the pilgrimage to Hay on Wye, some would say the Daddy of them all. It took two hours , it rained a lot, I had a nice lunch with friends then walked to a big tent where I sat with many other people while it rained some more. I decided not to get a book signed or to buy anything else from the the book or gift shops. I spotted no celebs (possibly they had seen the weather forecast.) Driving home took another two hours. In the rain.
Well at least I can say that ‘ I was there’. But I can think of lots of other smaller events which have been much more fun. Taking tea with Wendy Cope in Corsham was pretty good.
Hearing Nathan Filer in Yate Library was absolutely ace.
And now that I think of it, Kate Atkinson (my heroine!) and Barbara Trapido have both appeared in South Gos libraries over the last few years, practically on my doorstep. So unless you actually want to see more of people who are on the box every other night, you don’t have to travel miles (or pay a hefty ticket price) to get down with the writers.
Speaking of which, did I mention Hawkesbury Upton? The indefatigable Debbie Young (who visited this blog a while back) has organised a new local book event – the Hawkesbury Upton Literary Festival – which kicks off this Thursday evening to coincide with World Book Night where our very own celeb Katie Fforde is taking part along with a host of writers including prize-winning poet Shirley Wright and independent authors’ champion Orna Ross. In the last few weeks the programme has been snowballing and now even the the local Waitrose has stumped up with sponsorship.
AND IT’S FREE.
Shall I say that again? There is no charge! And for early birds there will be refreshments and a goody bag too.
It starts at 7 pm in the Fox Inn. Come early to be sure of a seat.
I’ll be there from 6pm sampling the Italian restaurant menu and meeting up with some old friends.
Why not join us?