October 8th, 2011

zooming day trip to cheltenham lit fest

Usually going to Cheltenham is a stately affair, where one gets set up in one's hotel room, has a little wander around town, does one's event or two, then has a long dinner, maybe drinks, before retiring to bed. Nope, nope, not this year; it was ALL ENGINES GO from early this morning morning til I just crashed back through the door at home about an hour ago. But I was rather curious to see my photos, so here I am at the computer already.

Ha ha... I told Axel Scheffler that every time I get a photo with him, he looks freaked out. So this time we make a special effort.

I did a lot of commiserating with Axel's Gruffalo, or the lovely lady who got kicked and mauled while she steamed away inside the costume. (Because after all, the Gruffalo is a monster, so if you're a kid, you have to fight it, right?)

Here I'm having a hard-core political discussion with a darling chappie named Alistair... (I had to grab this shot because I knew Stuart wouldn't be much impressed by all these book people, but this one might make him do a double-take. And it worked! Now he wishes he'd come along.)

I got a bit shy about getting a photo of Julia Donaldson; she'd already signed books for two hours so I didn't want to hassle her. But no one told me how many hours Lauren Child had been signing (probably just as many), so I took the liberty of snapping this trio (reviewer and Guardian columnist Julia Eccleshare, Lauren, and publicist Philippa Perry).

It's kind of hard to tell what's going on in this event photo and it looks like total mayhem, but really, people are making stuff, it's all good. The event sold out and we made lots of noise and drew adventure board games and everyone seemed to go away happy, so hurrah. I noticed quite a few kids drawing shark attacks on their railway game journeys... maybe sharks are an imminent threat when you live around Cheltenham.

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