Monday, October 22, 2018

Toronto International Festival of Authors Blitz: Part One

Bookworms! So if you didn't know already, I have been chosen to be a delegate for the 39th Edition of the festival! As a delegate, I am able to attend events that are happening throughout the eleven day festival! Although I've been unpacking still and trying to organize a lot (Because moving comes with a lot more work it seems!) I have been able to attend so many events! So with that being said, let's get on with the first portion of my experience there!

Let me take you on a little journey of what this is all about! So the Toronto International Festival of Authors (Let me say TIFA not only because it's easier, but because that's the correct term used) is about a festival happening over the course of eleven days with authors from all around the world. There are guest speakers, readings, poetry slams, Q&A, book signings and so much more! Each year the line-up gets bigger and better, while also exploring and celebrating the written word and to make readers think more about the words that are constantly written every day of the year! 

From the first day of meeting fellow delegates, I knew that this would become an amazing experience that I won't forget! I got to attend the opening of the events which featured Emma Donoghue and Roddy Doyle. During that time, I got to experience more about the life behind the novels and why the authors decided to create these stories that break barriers, shake the way we see society and the world, and sometimes open up secrets that we've been hiding behind for so long, we don't want to admit that it's a problem!

The atmosphere was absolutely amazing, and it definitely was an amazing experience for the very first event to start off the festival!

After that, I was able to attend a few more events during the weekend which included a couple panels of authors discussing their work, answering their questions along with going right into the craft of writing and how they go about the process, and anything that they need in order to get their books done!

One of the events I had gone to last night was the EUNIC Reading and Reception. What I loved so much about it was that you were sitting there listening to the authors that traveled from around the world to come and read their book in their own language, as they intended to write it! You really got to experience the feeling of each sentence that was being read out loud, the pauses and the gestures, and the emotion that was put into it. Obviously I couldn't understand the language, but what was great was that the festival provided a screen that was in English so that I could read along with it.

 Apart from the two panels that I attended which featured:

~Kelley Armstrong
~Michael Robotham
~Amy Stuart
~Kim Fu
~Kirsten McDougall
~Sarah Winman

There were two different panels that I had attended, and both were very interesting to sit in and listen to the authors discuss everything between their writing, the writing process, and advice that they can give to aspiring authors like myself! When it was time for the Q&A sessions after the panel there were many questions that had been asked, and I was fortunate enough to ask some questions myself, which mainly were about the best advice they were given, and advice they can give, along with their writing style, which was kind of various for each author, but I found that a lot of them didn't really do much outlining and planning...

Q: What is the best advice you received and the best advice you can give to aspiring authors?
A: Beats of the plot, setting, and characters. If you repeat the moments like a beat, it really helps to write it into the novel.

A:Make them care. When you make them care, then there is more of a connection between you, the work, and the readers.

A: Write, Write, Write! You can't fix a blank page is what I've always been told, so if you're constantly writing, you will have something to edit. If you have nothing, there is nothing to edit or fix!

Another amazing thing during the festival is that there is an empty chair on the stage for every single event to showcase an artist that has been silenced for their writing, and the ability to express themselves. There is also a petition to sign to free the writer that has been chosen each year to free them from their silence. You can also donate to support the festival HERE if you want to help celebrate more authors and amazing events that can happen year round!

So here is the last thing I can tell you all! It's a way that you can win big during the festival, especially if there are more days left for you to attend!

If you're able to attend any of the events, be sure to take a selfie or photo of your ticket with the hashtag #Festofauthors18 and tag @Festofauthors on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram and you can win $500 worth of books!

Also there are sure to submit your survey during each event, and you will be entered to win a getaway package for a stay-cation in Toronto, as well as $500 worth of books to add to your library! So be sure you're following TIFA to ensure that you don't miss any opportunities!

I realize that a lot of you aren't from Toronto or Canada, which is why I've been posting on my Instagram, so be sure you're following me there too! I've gone live during some panels, and you can ensure I'll have another post to finish off the event later on, so be sure you also subscribe to my email to know what that will be coming out!

So until the next time, Keep Reading!

Your Graduated Bookworm!! :)

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