1 March 2008

Talking Books

Once in a while my sister in law and I run a book stall at a "car boot sale" at her church. The church asks for a donation and we put up a couple of card tables and peddle books that we've recently read and are just taking up room on our shelves.

The books are sold for ridiculously low prices like $4 for the larger format or even hard backs, and $2 for the small paperback size. The books are all in excellent condition because invariably only she and I have handled them. We have probably about 150 books on our stall, all crime fiction, and today we sold about 40 in 4 hours. So we don't make our fortune, but we tell people that we are selling them to "finance our habit".

What I love about doing this in particular, is not just that it gives Claire and I a chance to catch up, but that I get to talk about books with the "customers". And a knowledgeable lot they are too. So the conversations today were about Kathy Reichs, Alexander McCall-Smith, Ruth Rendell, Peter Robinson, Reginald Hill, Donna Leon, Thomas H. Cook, and offerings on TV like Lewis, Unit One, and Dalziel & Pascoe. Time just flies. Spent doing something I love. Maybe I should work in a book shop, but I'd be hopeless at selling anything but crime fiction.

The other day when I was in a book shop buying my father a book for his birthday, I noticed the woman in the queue ahead of me was buying a crime fiction title. Can't think what it was now, perhaps the latest Denise Mina, but I startled her by asking her if she was going to Adelaide Writer's Week which of course starts tomorrow. I pointed her to the printed timetable on the counter, but I don't think she really understood the great opportunity it is, particularly since most of the events are free.

Anyway, I am really looking forward to spending the next 6 days at AWW, listening to people like Denise Mina, Thomas H. Cook, Gabrielle Lord, Marshall Browne, Peter Corris, Ian McEwan, Geraldine Brooks and Garry Disher. Here's a complete list of who is coming.

The week starts tomorrow with a dedication to Colin Thiele, the South Australian educator, author, poet who wrote BLUE FIN and STORM BOY, among other books, and immortalised Mr. Percival for a whole generation of Australian kids.

I am going to try to write every day about the sessions I go to, but we'll see.
If you are going, look for me.
The photo below gives you an inkling of what I look like. Come up to me - I'll be thrilled if you've read my blog.

Or ask me about oz_mystery_readers too.


Anonymous said...

Nice to put a face to the posts, Kerrie. Unfortunately, I am stuck in windy, cold and wet UK, but I look forward to reading your reports.

Marg said...

Enjoy your time at AWW. The line up of authors is stellar!

I read two Denise Mina books ages ago, but for no real reason have never got to read any more from her. I must rectify that!


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