Book Festivals by Allison Symes

Image Credit:  Images created in Book Brush using Pixabay photos.

 I’ll be en route to Scotland when this goes out. I’m part of the Brechin/Angus Book Festival (19th - 21st November). I’m running a workshop (on flash fiction) and giving an author talk. It will be lovely to meet up with writing friends, who are also taking part.

I love the idea of events to celebrate books whether you read them, write them, or do both. I can’t imagine my life without books. Nor do I wish to! Literacy is to be cherished. 

 I’ve sometimes gone to medieval weekends and return from those aware, had I lived then, I would most likely have been an illiterate peasant. I probably wouldn’t have reached the age I am now (and it is likely I would have died in childbirth).  

I smile when people talk about what or whom they might have been in a previous life. It’s always someone famous, glamorous, or both. Never anyone who was a peasant! Funny that…  

 For all the horrors in the world, am I glad to be born in the age I was? Generally, yes, especially in a part of the world where literacy is expected for all.

The best way to celebrate books is to buy them. I expect to do that at Brechin. I have a number of signed books written by friends on my shelves and I’m always happy to increase my collection! Those books are a visible encouragement for me to keep going with my writing. They made it. I can make it too. That kind of thing.

 We should celebrate books. They are a visible sign of progress from the days when few could read to the days when fewer cannot. Books educate us, entertain us, and inspire. Plenty to celebrate there.

Reading a good book is still the best way I can think of to gain knowledge. It was noted I always had my head in a book when I was younger. The only thing different about that statement now is I have aged! You learn subconsciously how stories work, how books are supposed to look, and that is useful for anyone wanting to be a writer. 

I’ve found I’ve developed a greater appreciation for the work that goes behind putting a book together. If someone makes something such as writing a book look easy, you can bet that same someone has worked hard for years to get to that point.  

A book festival should celebrate the wonderful works of fiction and non-fiction (and the hard work of their creators). It should cover a wide range of genres, which is also cause for celebration. How boring would it be if there was only one genre? 

 And I can’t think of a better way to escape into a different world for a few hours other than via a book. Yes, I can do so via film, but I find books “speak” to me more directly than if I saw the same story via a movie.

Let’s hear it for the books!



Ruth Leigh said…
Lovely to be spending time with you at this book festival Allison

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