Continuing on with our series of author experiences at book festivals Finland’s Antti Tuomainen reports back on his Edinburgh International Book Festival experience in 2018.
This past August, I was fantastically fortunate to be invited to and to participate in the Edinburgh International Book Festival. I say this with gratitude and happiness because EIBF is one of my all-time favourite literary happenings in one of my all-time favourite towns – and places in general. I love Scotland. I suppose it’s the combination of natural beauty and the scenery and the people and the easiness of travel. Not to mention some mystic element that I can’t quite put my finger on, something you feel in the air. And speaking of air, I don’t even mind the weather. (Full disclosure: I’m from Finland.)
This time around (my third time in Edinburgh over the years – yes, I have been that fortunate) I did something I’ve been thinking about for a long time. Before my appearance at the festival my Norwegian colleague Thomas Enger and I decided to see a bit of the lower Highlands. We drove to Drymen and on the first day hiked in the rugged, breathtakingly beautiful Ben Lomond area and on the second did the same in the rainforest-like lushness of the Loch Katrine area.
Such great days. Which only fortified my love of the Scottish scenery. Or as Mr Enger repeatedly put it: “I’m buying a house here.” Anyway, two days of that and back to Edinburgh where we came from. I did an event with the wonderful Lin Anderson and we had a great crowd. I enjoyed my time on the festival grounds, meeting fellow authors in the world-famous yurt and in general soaked up the atmosphere and did my best to walk the city once again. And if I’m ever asked to come back I’ll be making an even longer trip of it. I think we can see a trend here. It may well be that in the end, they don’t even have to invite me. I’m already there.
Thanks for sharing your experience at EIBF with us Antti!