The book event for readers, and writers, authors, publishers, and retailers. But mostly readers.
The Mission: Check out the small presses and meet people I’ve only met through the Internet.
The Day: Hot sun, cool shade, warm crowds.
The Unexpected: Came right at the beginning with an encounter with This Magazine (me: how long you been publishing? editor: 45 years. Ooooohhh. I bought 5 back issues for $10) and at the end, in the form of The Workhorsery, a small press that specializes in non-traumatic Canadian fiction.
Non-traumatic, I asked. Yeah, you know CanLit, always takes place on the prairie, a person is struggling and suffering, and a cat dies. Ah. That would account for all the little cat dolls prancing over the leaflets and books on the table.
I like! Especially since in my novel, the cat lives.
The Worst: Tiny Tom Donuts. These I used to only ever see at the CNE, an annual summer event of piggery and fun near the lake in Toronto. But there they were, being handed out to a long line of doughnut-fans from a truck between the sweet corn and something else. How could I resist? I must resist. I can’t have cinnamon and icing sugar all over my hands as I handle books and peruse magazines. Can I? No, no, no.
But then there they were again, on the other side of Queen’s Park, at the end of a long line of exhibitors where one is weary and in need of sustenance. Argh. I admit, I’m just about done with WOTS – so no excuses about sugary fingers anymore. Resistance is futile. I submit.
They’re hot and sweet and just what a gal needs.
The End: The nearest subway entrance is Museum, near Simon and Schuster, which is having it’s $3 per paperback sale. Looks sweet. But the crowds are thick, and I’m done. I need some coffee. What kind of book festival doesn’t have a coffee tent with coffee and croissants? (Or maybe it did, and I missed it…)
I head down into the bowels of the road and wait and wait and wait for a train with the other WOTS refugees. The TTC in all its service glory has stepped up Sunday service to rush-hour style weekday service. At last a train arrives. We cram in with our bags and totes and weary feet.