Musquodoboit Harbour Book Fair

Musquodoboit - November 7
We got out bright and early yesterday morning to head for Musquodoboit Harbour for the Book Fair. We had to take the long way around because of the weekend bridge closure but eventually we managed to find our way to the Old School at Musquodoboit Harbour.
Okay – am I wrong or evil in wanting to shorten Musquodoboit to Musk – just for the ease of typing?
Belinda and I parked the car and we took a walk around and visited the local public library (yeah, we are a wild pair of high-livers) and then we came to a cosy looking little bakery-coffee-shop – (otherwise known as a BCS).
Well, actually it was called the Dobbit  Bakehouse.
There we had some of the best coffee I’d ever tasted. It was strong and rich and flavorful.
I had a hearty bacon and onion and cheese biscuit and Belinda had an almond cookie and a molasses cookie which she shared with me.
And yes – I shared with my biscuit with her as well.
The bakery was a little cramped for space so I gulped my coffee to allow them to turn our table over. We walked a little further and came to the Harbour Fish N’ Fries.
Here we had some of the best fish and chips that I had ever tasted. The batter was light and crisp and the fish tasted fresh and was not overfried and the service was quick. Sadly, there was coconut cream pie on the dessert menu that I never did manage to come back to even though I fully intended to do so.
Then we walked on back to the Musquodoboit Harbour Old School Community Gathering House.
 The rest of the afternoon was a little less than successful.
We just did not have the sort of a crowd that we had hoped for. There were maybe six or eight actual visitors to the book fair and we spent the afternoon taking turns giving public readings to ourselves. The group of authors were a great bunch and I did manage to sell 4 copies of my Nimbus books – but that was a long way to go to sell four books.
Here's a photo of the Fair itself. See if you can spot the over-fed writer... :)

Here’s a photo of the Fair itself. See if you can spot the over-fed writer… 🙂

Sometimes a gig just works out that way. There is really no telling what sort of a crowd you will draw when you go to something like this. Life is a big old experimental laboratory and sometimes you just have to jump in and give things a try.
Still, I have to wonder if this event could not have been publicized a little better. Neither of the restaurants knew about the event. It might have been a better idea to work out some sort of a partnership with the local library. Also, a big old sign close to the road with some balloons tied to the sign and blowing in the wind that read something like GIGANTIC BIG BOOK FAIR IN HERE, COME A’RUNNING! might have helped draw us a little traffic.
It might have been an idea to tie it in with the local schools as well. Maybe to hold a writing contest for local kids with a big book bag for the winner.
As you can see by the photo the Old School is a little out of sight of the road and folks driving by likely dismiss it as being just a big old house. The parking lot was a little hard to find and there was signing warning against unauthorized parking that might have scared some folks off.
Still, I had fun and I bought myself a book from a local author and I got to meet a few folks I hadn’t seen in a long time and Belinda and I had some fine conversation – and even though we got lost coming home we found ourselves pretty quickly and managed to get home in time for a little TV watching – some ribs and some fried potatoes.
I still wish I’d gone back for that pie though.
yours in storytelling,
Steve Vernon

PS: This is the very LAST day for my Kindle Scout Campaign. If any of you haven’t taken the time to click this picture and nominate my book I would be VERY grateful to you if you did today. It doesn’t cost a dime and if my book IS selected you’ll get a free kindle copy BEFORE the e-book goes on sale.

Please click this link and nominate A BLURT IN TIME for the Kindle Scout program.

Please click this link and nominate A BLURT IN TIME for the Kindle Scout program.

10 responses to “Musquodoboit Harbour Book Fair

  1. Oh Jeez. And I have a book fair coming up next Saturday. Maybe should lower my already customarily low expectations even further. To zero.


  2. Thanks for sharing your story. Your suggestions were all good ones and your tale made me want to visit “Musk”.


  3. Some days are like that but it sounds as if you had a couple of nice snacks and valuable time together. A little publicity can go a long way. Surprised there were no signs, posters in the library and coffee shops etc.


  4. Although you didn’t have the opportunity to observe it, the other authors present were treated to a fantastic story telling event that was unequaled anywhere. With very little effort I can close my eyes and see that oars man swimming up from the depths on the North Atlantic. Thank you.


  5. It’s disappointing that it didn’t turn out better. I’m certain it has potential because Word on the Street draws a large crowd. Every event has to start somewhere. Maybe it will be better in the spring when everyone is looking to get outside again, and they won’t be distracted by all the other events going on, such as Christmas craft shows.

    As for Musquodoboit, those of us who use it a lot (Middle Musquodoboit too), we sometimes say Muskie. The 4H group is called Muskie Maple Leafs. But really, it takes skill to say and spell Musquodoboit correctly.

    I was introduced to Dobbit Bake House in the spring through the Musquodoboit Harbour Farmers Market. I have their tea and muffins every Sunday morning. Oh, and their date squares. Love them.

    I’ve been stopping at Harbour Fish N Chips for decades. My father is from two hours down the Number 7, and we’ve had a camp there forever, so on Friday nights, we’d stop in for fish and chips or chicken tenders and chips and eat them on the way.

    I’ve attended many markets since April, and each one has its own take-away lesson. Sometimes I sell lots of books, sometimes I meet writers and editors, and sometimes I just learn how to improve my display. Sometimes I learn from other vendors what is good and what is bad, and what’s coming up next month. And sometimes I write or edit for four hours with only minor interruptions from customers. If I come armed with ‘work’ (writing or editing), my time is never wasted.

    I hope the ones who organised this are not too disappointed. I hope they try again at another time. I hope they try things a little differently next time. I’d love to see these events succeed, so I’m willing to help out. The good thing is, the event success can only go up from here.

    Thanks for your report. At least the day wasn’t a complete loss. Networking with other writers is priceless.


  6. Hope that you (and Diane) make sure these suggested improvements are brought to the attention of the organizers.


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