Monday, 2 March 2009

V Thoughts from Abroad--Part 1


Last week was Venice (of which more in a later blog). This week it's Vevey in Switzerland (I am working my way down the world's towns beginning with V, it appears) for my first 'abroad' author visit to an International school. I am told that school visits can sometimes be a nightmare of inefficiency and indifference (although in my case I have always been lucky enough to visit wonderful schools), but this one has started well. I am in a pretty hotel, overlooking Lake Leman and the Alps--or I would be if the fog was not curling in great grey drifts across the water. The church bells are tolling the hour in that slow, indefinably Swiss way which is somehow foreign to an ear more accustomed to English peals. Tomorrow I sing and read rhymes to the tinies, and then talk about myths to the older ones. Lunch is provided, as is a dinner 'dans les montagnes'--a case of autre pays, autre moeurs, perhaps. This is one of the parts I like best about being an author--the chance to meet my audience, and talk about the things I love most--books and writing. It will be hard work--think of it as being on stage for 4 hours and performing--but somehow this particular visit doesn't feel like work, but (rather guiltily) more akin to a mini holiday. Yes, I am 'losing' three days which could have been spent writing. But I think what I will gain in inspiration is well worth it. The children I meet are always full of ideas and questions, and meeting them reminds me of why I do this job. Maybe one day, in the far off future, some famous literary prizewinner will be asked how they got into writing. Perhaps they will say, "Well, there was this author who came to my school and inspired me...." Just maybe....

PS: The blog-hijacking dinmont now has his own blog here. Thank goodness. He will now no longer be writing rude things on mine. I'm quite sure he will keep dishing the dirt on my authorly activities in his own inimitable way, though. I hear he has a surprise for me on my return to England. I can't wait. Not.

1 comment:

bookwitch said...

As long as it's not poo....

Maybe your next trip has to be to Visby then. I understand it's nice there.

 
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