BC Book Prizes On Tour
April 19, 2011
A sign that we’re nearing the end of the tour: can’t remember where we were when I blogged last, or where we were the day before yesterday for that matter.
Yesterday we were in Vernon at the Vernon Secondary School where no kids got thrown out—a first—and then at Gallery Vertigo for, once again, a small but enthusiastic crowd.
Today, we’re paying for our relaxed weekend with schools in Kelowna and Penticton (the name of which George insists on mispronouncing) as well as an evening event at Hooked On Books.
George continues to amaze me (we appear together) with his jazzy improvisations and funny-as-hell riffs. I’m his warm-up act. Bryan the Boss must be tour-drunk because his mental state appears to be deteriorating quite badly to the point where we’ve noticed people on the street staring at him in alarm. Julie continues to be the stable and sensible centre—holding for now.
Tomorrow we go to Oliver (the “wine capital of BC” which George insists is actually an official part of the town’s name). No doubt, he will make hay of this accidental connection in his irresponsible attempts to claim to rooms full of impressionable young people that poets make lots of money. Then, dear Blog, it’s back to Vancouver so we can collect our winning prizes.
April 17, 2011
The Okanagan tour group is now in Kelowna lounging around the hotel or strolling through the city. We have only one gig today at Mosaic Books, but will make up for it Monday and Tuesday with multiple school and evening events.
I’d like to praise BC Book Prizes and its organization which has been flawless and friendly. Bryan the boss is unfailingly helpful, drives extremely well, and maintains his composure in the face of writerly eccentricities, unreasonable demands and invariably faulty, unsolicited driving directions. (Note to self and George: the GPS is always right.)
Yesterday, we had a good reading / talk at the Salmon Arm library with a modest but lively crowd. I’ve just looked out my window to discover that it is snowing!
April 16, 2011
It’s a crapshoot when four total strangers pile into a van one early morning for a 4 hour drive over the mountains with five more close-quarters days to go. Who knows what bores, whiners or crazies you might end up with. But of course, my tour partners (George and Julie, and Bryan the boss) turn out to be charming, kind, interesting, splendid people.
A good day at South Kamloops Secondary School where the kids asked good questions and only one got marched off to the vice-principal’s office for undisclosed crimes, and the library with an excellent turnout and discussion.
April 15, 2011
We finished the first day of the Okanagan Leg of the tour.
We read at two schools and the Library. It was great to see such a large and interested group turn out. One lady even skipped work to come.
March 29, 2011
I can’t believe that I leave in just over a week for the 8th annual BC Book Prizes On Tour. I have had the pleasure of being the Tour Driver/Director every year and I thoroughly enjoy it. Getting to know new authors every year, exploring the province, and sharing reading, writing and literacy with communities and schools; nothing beats it.
This year we’re excited to return to Salmon Arm in the Sushwap. We visited schools there several years ago, but will be having an afternoon event at the public library on Saturday, April 16. I’m looking forward to meeting the people of Salmon Arm and exploring the town after the event. Let us know the best spot to have dinner!
I also have some favourite things to do each year, especially when the authors haven’t travelled within BC extensively. The event at the Museum of Northern BC in Prince Rupert is stunning. The museum staff make us feel so welcome and we present in this gorgeous room with tall totems and floor-to-ceiling windows. The view and the sunset from that room is breathtaking.
Another highlight is the drive between Smithers and Prince Rupert on the Yellowhead Highway. The Skeena River, Coast Mountains, and northwest Native culture are all incredible sights on this journey. It may seem like a long drive to be stuck in the car with relative strangers, but it is actually these long drives that strengthen our new friendships.
So, to close, I hope to see you all at the Soirée on April 5th, and I’ll be headed out on the Northern Leg bright and early on Thursday morning (April 7).