Monday 28 October 2013

Fleet 10K

Yesterday morning before it got really wet and windy I took part in the the Fleet 10k race.
It was my first 10k race and I was pretty nervous.  I knew I could run the distance but the thing I really wanted to do was run it in under an hour.  At the 5k mark I was feeling good and had a time just over 28 minutes.  Not my fastest 5k time ever, but under 30 minutes and leaving me with something in the tank for the last 5k.  In the end I came in 364 out of 504 in 55:37. 
The fact that the winner came in nearly half an hour ahead of me is a little scary.  That's really fast!  But I am happy with my time and feel that its all good practice for the half marathon next March.  I just need a few more miles under my belt, I hope the winter isn't too harsh.

Wednesday 23 October 2013

Rachel Joyce

Last night at the Guildford Book Festival I was on the roving mike for Rachel Joyce's session.  This means that I get to sit in the session and at the end when they have FAQs I have to get the mike to the person in the audience so they could ask a question.
I'd not heard of Rachel Joyce before so wasn't sure what the session would be like, but I'm really glad I got to see this one.  She was so nice and if her books - The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry and Perfect are as good as she was speaking they will be very good indeed.
I just wish I'd been allowed to record it or had thought to make some notes.  I know that I can't remember all the brilliant things she said.  But the one thing that really stuck with me was when she said there was a chap she had seen who needed help, but there was nothing she could do, so she put him in her book so she could look after him there.  I just thought that was a beautiful thought.
You can tell how good she was as not only do I now want to read both her books but I left the session all fired up and wanting to write something.  A feeling I've been lacking for a bit.  Lets hope I can keep hold of it.

And thats the end of my time volunteering at the festival.  I've really enjoyed it, but I keep forgetting it is a book festival then being all surprised that everyone is as enthusiastic about books as I am.  I hope that I'll have time to help again next year.

Monday 21 October 2013

Guildford Book Festival volunteering

This weekend I've been busy helping at the Guildford Book Festival.
I've handed out clipboards and paper to children, tidied the Green Room and guarded the books while the bookseller went to retrieve some from another venue.
I've enjoyed it so far with one more evening to go, although the festival continues until Sunday.  
My two favourite parts have been 1. watching Alex Scarrow talking to his young fans while signing books for them - it didn't seem to matter what age they were or how scarily keen they were, he took the time to really listen to what they had to say and have photos taken. And 2. being allowed to watch Chris Brookmyer and Mark Billingham for free - payment enough for volunteering.  Chris is one of my top 5 authors (Stephen King tops the bill) and as a budding writer it is always great to hear from 'real' authors.
I'm looking forward to helping out with the roving mikes tomorrow, but I'll also be glad of  some free time again.

Tuesday 15 October 2013

October's writers group

Things have been kinda busy round here the last couple of weeks.
We had a long weekend in Frankfurt visiting a friend, my car got really ill and my degree certificate finally turned up.  And did I do any writing?  Nope, just a diary of what we got up to in Frankfurt.  Maybe helping out at the Book festival will inspire me?

Apparently the homework from last month was very inspiring, with stories among others, about dead dogs and tree spirits.  Lets hope this months is as inspiring.

This months homework: If everything in life were free, what is the FIRST thing you would go and do? (borrowed from The One-Minute Writer