Sorry for being so quiet! I’ve been pretty busy writing and travelling all over for events.
I had great fun at the Bishop’s Stortford Festival, at the College du Leman in Geneva, at Nottingham Playhouse theatre for an official World Book Day event, interviewing Anthony Horowitz in front of 800 people at the Southbank Centre – and I just got back from Dubai and the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature 2015. It’s an incredible festival with amazing guests and a tireless staff making sure everything runs smoothly.
Here I am with book-reading competition winner Aaditya and his sister Aditi at the Festival’s opening ceremony! They were very cool.
I did an event at the Universal American School for a few hundred children. Here’s the hall, filling up…
They were a fabulous audience and the signing session after was bonkers. I did a festival event too, which was brilliant fun.
The funniest moment was when someone asked, ‘How much coffee did you have before this event?!’
It was good to hang out with other authors and illustrators. John ‘Stinkbomb and Ketchup-Face’ Dougherty and David ‘Mr Gum’ Tazzyman were great company, as was that giant amongst men we call Philip ‘The Grunts’ Ardagh. Words are not enough to describe him. Not even with hand signals and an explanatory map.
Jenni Murray, the wonder woman of British broadcasting, was lovely too!
It was great to see so much of Dubai too – from the tallest building in the world and the biggest shopping mall, to historic Shindagha and an amazing desert safari. I have never been driven around in a 4×4 up and down desert dunes, plunging off them at crazy angles, seeing nothing on the horizon but sand. Unforgettable.
So many lovely people were there. (I’ve posted lots of pictures on the SteveColeBooks Facebook page if you fancy a look.) Rachel Hamilton, David Mitchell, Michael Morpurgo, Adele Parks, Josh Lacey, Kate Mills, Liz Fenwick, Lemn Sissay, Owen Sheers, Lou and Joe Abercrombie (thanks for taking cool photos, Lou!), Mari and Jasper Fforde, Julia and Malcolm Donaldson… they all added smiles and sunshine.
Let’s not forget the organisers and the volunteers! Yvette, Maryann, Avril, Annabelle, Kathrin, Charlotte – so many more! – and of course, founder of the festival, Isobel Abulhoul OBE (she’s in front in the picture above. Can you spot me and David Tazzyman, trying to look cool in our shades?).
Let’s also not forget Jamilla the camel!
It was a truly memorable week in all sorts of ways.
Meantime, I’m already back eventing, in Windsor and Ascot this time. Not *quite* the same, but…
I’m also back interviewing Anthony Horowitz on stage in Cambridge on April 18th. Tickets and info here.