Wednesday, 29 June 2011

Raising a Cheer : Penny Dolan

Last Saturday I had a great time. I was able to sit through three sessions by illustrator Lynne Chapman. I've always really enjoyed the energy and colour in her work, and have a special fondness for the books she's done with SAS writer friends such as Julia Jarman and Damian Harvey.

So it was an almost total pleasure seeing Lynne working with children small and big and hear her talk to adults about her work.

Almost total. Because I'd also been involved with setting up the day.

It was a useful reminder of the work behind such events. The visitor - Lynne - and the date were easy choices once I'd made sure to avoid Wimbledon finals weekend. There was all the publicity - local press, radio, and flyers and display materials for the library. There was arranging the times on the day, the travel and the pick-up.

There'd also been several long meetings and emails about the venue with the other organisations involved and the people who'd be there - or not be there - to help and when, and small emergencies. All important stuff.

I mustn't forget the collecting of materials for the workshop, the lunch for Lynne, the evalustion forms & photo permissions, the books for the booksales (not forgetting the float), the refreshments and so on. There has been more and there is still more to do to finish the event off completely.

The day was joyous, and I didn't mind a bit (though may have muttered darkly at times) but it did consume so much of my time.

No sympathy needed here for me, though.

I just want to raise a huge huge cheer of thanks for all the people, especially librarians, teachers, festival arrangers and bookshop owners who so often do all this work for US!

By the way, if you are interested in illustration, look up Lynne's website and the images on her amazing blog, An Illustrator's Life For Me!

A Boy Called M.O.U.S.E out in paperback this August


michelle lovric said...

Yes, I agree. There are lots of unsung heroes at literary events. We authors are very quick to be pained when something goes wrong, but so many things go right, invisibly.

I've been amazed at the support that is offered at litfests.

Sue Purkiss said...

Hear, hear, Penny. Am thinking of Julie, the librarian who organised the event I went to last week. She didn't need to do it, and it must have been a lot of work.

Linda Strachan said...

Absolutely! There are amazing people who work very hard to make events happen and run smoothly - they are often unsung heroes. When it all goes well they make it look as if it was so easy but it usually only works because behind the scenes they are continually checking, and sorting out problems before they become huge.

Lynda Waterhouse said...

Doubly exhausting when you are organising events and taking part yourself.I often find it easier to promote friends than speak up for myself. Am planning on putting together an event to celebrate the publication of '100 Silent Films' by Bryony Dixon.