Burning a Hole

Burning a Hole
Image: Liz West

I nearly never went to the ‘Ten at Ten’ event at the Edinburgh Book Festival yesterday morning, but I’m glad I did. When I got up around 7am I was tired and just wanted to sleep. But I also didn’t want to waste the day. So I forced myself into gear and off I went, back up to Charlotte Square.

Sean O’Brien was our reader this morning, a poet of some considerable acclaim. A large, grey-bearded Geordie, he read us five poems ranging from the humorous to the deep and sorrowful, ending with a poem one line long. He really was excellent, and on the back of it, I went straight out and bought his book, Down River.

With my Sunday off to a flyer I vowed to attend more of these 10-minute readings next year—they really are a great way to start the day.

I bought also a copy of Publishing Scotland, the bible of publishing in this country wit a single aim—I have to start getting published in my own country. Reading the anthology my friend appeared in made me realise that I should be looking more to this type of publication as well as online journals. A lot of it comes down to targeting the right piece to the right forum, but getting published in my homeland will help me greatly.

I took my new purchases to my Rose Street coffee shop and supped a cappuccino while reading, before heading back home. I had forgotten that one half of the Bigotry Brigade was in town to play Hibs, so the bus was packed. Not much fun, I can tell you.

Back home I spent most of the day writing, working on getting BACCARA BURNING finished. “Burning” is a good word to use in the title because the story is burning a hole in my stomach.

I also got round to launching a new blog. I’ve decided to hold all my gig reviews in the one place, so I uploaded all the ones I’ve been doing lately for News of the World, as well as some older ones that appeared in other journals or magazines. Based on the off-the-cuff comment made about me by the NotW editor, I’ve called the new blog The Man in the East, and you can read it here.

After all that I headed back up to the book festival to see South African author, Gillian Slovo talk about her new book, Black Orchids.

I found her to be a remarkable and fascinating woman, who seems to care deeply about her writing, but also of the huge topics she writes about. Race, feminism, and immigration are all tackled in her books, but it’s not surprising when you hear her talk about her parents, Joe Slovo and Ruth First, both major figures in the anti-apartheid struggle, who lived lives of exile until her mother was murdered by a letter bomb in 1982.

I didn’t know much about her until the book festival, but that’s the beauty of this place; one gets exposed to all kinds of people and very often it leads to eye opening moments like that was.

Finally, some interesting news that came through that should make Oasis fans feel ashamed on top of the pain of Noel leaving that band. After Oasis pulled out of their Friday evening headline slot at the Rock En Seine Festival near Paris, (due to Liam being his usual allegedly ‘friendly’ self) one band stepped up to fill the slot. French festival goers went ecstatic when Madness returned to the stage to play their second set of the day.

Having already played an hour long set around 7pm, Madness stepped into the breach and saved the day by playing a further set at 10.15pm on Friday 28th August. When Suggs introduced the band for the second time he said: “We’re not Snow Patrol—we’re not…[Oasis – crowd].” The Sound of Music was played before Mr Smash launched into Madness’ trademark intro, One Step Beyond.

Click here to view the action

Stella by Colin Galbraith – available now from Eternal Press – www.eternalpress.ca

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About Colin Galbraith

Thriller author, music fan, St Mirren fan, fluff chucker, rabbit tamer, outstanding fake faller. Loves cannoli.
This entry was posted in Books, Edinburgh, Fiction, Food, Drink and Bevvy, Freelance, Music, Poetry, Publishing and Marketing, Reading, Scotland, Writing and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Burning a Hole

  1. Pingback: Posts about Digg as of August 31, 2009 » The Daily Parr

  2. Sounds like the book festival has been a great experience all around. Congrats on the new blog!

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