Shall we meet in Charlotte Square?

The programme for the Edinburgh International Book Festival is finally here. I’d waited so impatiently and for so long, and then in the end I got my dates muddled and thought it was today. Turns out it was yesterday, which meant that all that time last night when I’d intended to be doing other things, I was mentally moving between tents in Charlotte Square. In the sunshine, obviously. The sun always shines.

And speaking of him, I’d quite like for Son to get off his Erasmus year bottom and go and find a flat for me to stay in when the time comes. (I mean, please can we come and stay with you, dear? We’ll be as good as it’s possible for us to be.)

Are times hard? Yes, I know they are. More of a rhetorical question. I wasn’t counting in the main programme, but I felt a distinct shortage of author events in the children’s programme. There are many ‘generic’ events. I don’t know how things are financed, but if the publishers pay for their protégés to attend, I can understand if authors are thinner on the square. Or for that matter, if the festival finances every move authors make, then saving on the children’s events is one solution.

Last year we had to make hard decisions on who to miss when people clashed. I don’t think that will be a problem this time.

In fact, it wasn’t until I read through the schools’ programme as well that I found enough authors to satisfy my needs. Can I manage to look like a school, and sneak in? I shouldn’t highlight anyone here, but I’ll just say a small hurrah for Simmone Howell who’s coming all the way from Australia.

I’ll have to sit down properly and do my logistics now. Unlike last year they have been open about press tickets for children’s events. Then I was dismayed to find that hardly any of them were available, so had to do some negotiating on the side. Basically, if you’re not Francesca Simon, you’ll not have the reporters flocking to your ‘thing’.

But I’ll flock as best as I can.

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13 responses to “Shall we meet in Charlotte Square?

  1. Hello Bookwitch! Hope you’ll be back in Edinburgh this year — Simmone is doing the lovely Zine workshop for teens too, so hurrah for multitalented authors.

    And have you read Tohby Riddle yet? He’s over from Australia too. Sydney Morning Herald said “shades of Kerouac”, wonder what you’ll think!

    and ps, we are working on the press ticket thing. hope it goes more smoothly this time around!

  2. You must have felt your ears burning, Sara! We were just talking about you and the programme, the photographer and I. Will be contacting you soon to see about tickets and events and people.

    Don’t know Tohby Riddle, but will have to look him up. As long as there aren’t too many Kerouac-ky shades!

  3. Alas, I’m only in Edinburgh for a couple of days during the festival, and nothing I want to go to coincides with my visit! (Well, almost nothing – I’m sure I’ll find a session or two…)

    Note with sadness they’ll have to cancel the Jose Saramango session with the news of his death today.

    (And on the crime fiction front, note with annoyance that most of the authors are people don’t particularly enjoy reading. Scandinavian content low this year…)

  4. well, Bookwitch, I’ll be there. (Try to keep me away.) And I’ll be there pretty much every day, since I live here. My events are 16, 21 and 22, but I’ll happily have coffee with you and have my shoes photographed any day…

  5. Make that every day. How about a shoe challenge? See how many pairs you can manage.

  6. I can never resist a challenge where shoes are concerned. See you in the Yurt!

  7. It will be unfair, of course, because I’ll only be able to muster two or three pairs while ‘on the road’. Daughter still thinks she’ll be allowed to buy wellies. Pah.

  8. For comfortable but stylish shoes in Edinburgh, I can seriously recommend Rogerson’s Fine Footwear in Rose St (they own the Ecco shop across the road too). I blame any credit card debt acquired during my PhD entirely on that establishment – but who knew the flat-footed could also have stylish feet?

  9. I knew that! We don’t all have to be like Nicola. Will have to investigate Rogerson’s. Will send you the bill if it’s too tempting. Currently hoping to find something both comfortable and purple. The right kind of purple.

  10. Bookwitch – oooh, I am also looking for purple, the right kind thereof. (I may have to kill you if I find that you are wearing shoes that I want, you realise?) Surprisingly, I DO need my shoes to be comfortable. My shoe shopping is particularly challenging because what I’m looking for is shoes that LOOK as if they must be uncomfortable, but secretly aren’t.

  11. Hi Bookwitch. I’ll be there, too most days and I’ll be happy to adjudicate the shoe challenge- just to ensure fair play – and because I’m curious to see how many different pairs Nicola can come up with!

  12. Nicola – I feel we could wear the same shoes, at a pinch, as long as we don’t do it on the same day or in the same place. And I obviously don’t want them to pinch.

    Linda – that’s good. I’d just found you doing a workshop, which I don’t feel qualified to join. As for the shoe challenge, I really don’t believe Nicola can manage all that many pairs.

  13. ooh Just catching up with things- Have I missed something, why don’t you feel qualified to join in? I’m confused.
    Isn’t that the whole idea of these workshops – people come to find out if they want to do it and try it out, or to find new ways to approach writing? But then perhaps you would be a bit too scary to have in my writing for children workshop, too witchy- in a good way, of course 🙂

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