My impressions of the Beaconsfield Festival of Golden Words, on this super-tired “day after”, are pretty much as follows:
Beaconsfield, you are beautiful. People of Beaconsfield, you are beautiful.
Stephen Dando-Collins, you are surely some kind of Time Lord Rock Star Super-legend. You pulled off something utterly awesome and you deserve several medals.
Christina Booth, not only are you one of the most talented writers and illustrators in this country, you are the best of people, too.
Paige Turner, you give the best hugs.
Nick Earls, it was worth waiting half my life to meet you. You are phenomenal.
Tristan Bancks, you and your family are the cat’s pyjamas and yes, you SHOULD move to Tassie.
Heather Rose, I was right to idolise you.
Danielle Wood, your stories of motherhood and writing make everything better.
Sherryl Clark, you are genuinely scary in vampire fangs.
I really shouldn’t blog so much about Robbie Williams if I’m to be taken seriousy at festivals. I really shouldn’t wear pink Chuck Taylors and eye glitter if I’m to be taken seriously at festivals.
Lauren Hay, you are the most talented young writer in Tassie and I can’t wait to see you flourish.
Young readers are wondrous.
New friends are amazing. Old friends are even better.
Being a writer is the best job on the planet. Being a Tasmanian writer is the best job in the universe.
I talk far too much about my Tiger when I’m meant to be talking about writing.
I really should not be on panels the day after a state election. I get mildly ranty.
People who volunteer to work at festivals like this should really be up there on stage. They have the best stories.
Finally, booksellers are the best people to ever exist. Nella, Ros, Clive, Irene and the staff at Fullers Bookshop, you are just beyond words (pun intended). I am grateful to know you all, and grateful for the work you do. Without booksellers; without bookshops, the world would be much less golden.
Pun intended. But words – and affection – sincere.
Thank you to everyone who came to my sessions. Thank you to the teachers and librarians who drove across the state to get their students there. You are heroes. Thank you to Tiger’s Gran and Granda-granda and Uncle Owl for letting us stay and keeping me calm.
Thank you, Mr Dando-Collins.
Thank you, Beaconsfield.
Please, Mr Hodgman, Mr Abetz, do all you can to help this festival continue next year.
Festivals like this, and the art they promote, give us hope and spirit and the will to fight. I have a feeling we as Tasmanians will need that will and hope in the coming years.