My sixth day in Toronto

Well – today was the first day of the Toronto Silver Birch Festival. I was strictly a spectator but I did my best to learn as much and listen as much as I could. Afterwards we had a great meet and greet shmoozathon at THE PEARL restaurant. I chatted with quite a few people – although I am still a very poor shmoozer. I have a hard time hearing what other people are saying in crowded rooms – the by-product of too many years spent working in too many factories and loading docks.

Several people mentioned that they had read and enjoyed my blog entry – MY FIRST FAN LETTER.

I’d post a link here but I am still struggling to master this rinky-tink netbook.

I must be up early tomorrow to get some breakfast into me and to be ready to present my full one hour workshop. It is one of the first events of the morning – which is a BIT of a handicap because it takes a certain amount of time to get ALL of the 5000 or so students succesfully delivered to the Festival Sight. Still – I will do the best I can with what opportunity I havel There is NEVER any perfect time for anything. You just have to wing it and do your best.

Tonight I had supper at the Ferkin Pub on Yonge Street. Had a buttered chicken pie – very tasty.Then I moved up the street and had desert – a vanilla milkshake – at the Hard Rock Cafe. I’ve always wanted to eat there – but the menus had no prices listed – and that ALWAYS makes me nervous – so I settled for a milkshake – just so that I could say that I did actually dine at the Hard Rock Cafe.

Tonight I had a good work-out at the hotel fitness centre and am relaxing before going to bed.

I worry a little that I haven’t done my very best here at this Festival. I have made more than my share of goof-ups – and everyone else seems to be so at ease with an event this size.

In any case – I’ve had a lot of fun and I’ve reached quite a few kids. Talked to teachers and librarians and fellow writers. Met bookstore owners and even drank a milkshake at the Hard Rock Cafe.

This has been the closest I have come to taking a for-real vacation in an awful lot of years – possibly all my life. My early years were spent working labour with very little opportunity for vacations. I was usually too busy trying to pay the bills to bother with leisure. I believe that this time out has done wonders for recharging my batteries. I can’t wait to get back to work on the new YA novel manuscript.

That’s all I’ve got to tell you for now.

yours in storytelling,

Steve Vernon

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