Whenever I go to a writer’s festival, I choose one book to buy.
This is a budgetary decision, not a choice, I’d happily buy every book from every author at the festival.
Before I even get to the Kyogle Writers Festival I have my eye on a few after perusing the program.
Hearing an author in conversation or on a panel can hook you in and make you desperate to read their story.
Buying a book taps into the author’s imagination and intellect. It could be the challenge. Or the escape into another world. It could be the beauty.
I confess, I like to sniff a new book, to crack it open and be the first person to set eyes on the pages, the story – on everything.
At the Kyogle Festival there will be a pop-up bookshop.
I’m hoping the bookshop is near one of Kyogle’s cafes as I may need a few lattes while I decide which book to buy.
Reason 2: The words
As a writer I love words – finding the right ones to express the story.
As a reader I love words in a different way – soaking in them like bath, re-reading a sentence if it strikes me or is a thing of beauty.
At a writer’s festival, you are read to. You hear the words rather than see them. There is something special about an author reading their own work. I lean into the readings keen to hear the author’s interpretation of their own words.
At the festival, you have the opportunity to hear authors read their work.
Reason 3: The wisdom
What a wonderful word this is – and of course wisdom is fluent and means different things to different people.
For me wisdom is an ah-ha moment. Sometimes sudden but more like a soft but insistent breeze that tousles my hair and makes me whisper – “ah-ha.”.
Wisdom can offer an insight, a confirmation or an epiphany,
This is one of the joys of being around writers. You don’t know when that will happen. One moment you’re laughing or thinking hard about what an author said and ka-boom.
There’s that wisdom that you take home and keep forever.
One of my favourite quotes is from Arundhati Roy’s God of Small Things (she isn’t at this year’s festival, but who knows, one day).
‘Another world is not only possible, she is on her way. On a quiet day, I can hear her breathing.’
Is that not stunning?
You will find words, sentences, quotes that steal your attention. These are the treasures you take home from hanging out at the Kyogle Writers Festival.
Mary Oliver’s poem The Swan stayed with me from the first moment I heard it read aloud.
The last lines are:
And have you too finally figured out what beauty is for?
And have you changed your life?
Change your life, be inspired by words and wisdom at the Kyogle Writers Festival.