Sunday, 12 August 2018

Author #Speaking #Opportunities

Sunday Update

Ballater Royal Deeside Scotland
My Saturday was taken up with manning my table at the FOCUS Craft Fair in Ballater, Royal Deeside, Aberdeenshire.  

It was the end of Victoria Week in Ballater and the town’s Highland Games had been held the previous Thursday so the town was fairly hopping with tourists, many of whom wandered in to the Victoria Hall to our Fair. Some only browsed and many of them bought but for me the best parts of the day were the conversations.

Some of my conversations can be lengthy, the browsers only milking my knowledge after which they wander off without buying. Others are really interested in what I can tell them about Roman Scotland and they head off with at least the first book in the series, sometimes more.

One really good aspect of the unplanned conversations is when I gain a booking for an author presentation or talk. Saturday was a fabulous day for that! I now have a firm booking to speak to a ‘History’ group, members of what they call the U3A- University of the Third Age - aka pensioners having fun. This group meet in Turriff which isn’t too far for me to drive and I have the feeling that I may learn as much from them as they learn from me. Hopefully the lady organiser can have the event organised by late Sept or early Oct. They generally use a small room at the local library but for my attendance she intends to make it more public with the librarians widening the audience to all comers. I’m really looking forward to more details and to attending.

As well as the above, I was also engaged in conversation with a lady who works in an independent bookstore in Grantown-On-Spey. The owner is hoisting a Historical Fiction Festival in early Sept. and I was asked if I’d be interested in conducting some sort of workshop with younger readers. This is more likely to be a 2019 event since this Sept looms! Again, I’m game to try many things.  

A third opportunity as a result of my conversations is that the local librarian is going to try to ensure that current versions of my novels are stocked in the Aberdeenshire Library system. 'Result!' As people are wont to say these days. 

A great day for me and the icing on the cake was also to have a lovely conversation with two of my ex-pupils that I’ve not seen for decades. One is 30 today and I taught her as a Primary Seven pupil back in 2000. Her parting words were amazing- she said I was a fun teacher to have when back then when the history topic was WW2!  

I hope your day is/was a great one.


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