Archives for posts with tag: Literary festival

Hello everyone. Today is Tuesday and I bring you something a little special. I don’t  know if you remember but a few months ago I told you I had left my job and I was going to be trying other things. I spent some time in Barcelona, ​​visiting my parents, I came back to England, I published a  novella ‘Family, lust and cameras‘ (never hurts to do some advertising), I set about writing my new romance novel (‘ I Love Your Cupcakes‘ if I don’t change the title), and I’ve been translating my works and those of other writers.
But I had other plans. You will remember that I have talked about Hay-on-Wye before (here’s the link to the first post, in case you didn’t see it).

https://olganm.wordpress.com/2013/10/22/hay-on-wye-a-paradise-for-booklovers/

Hay-on-Wye's castle

Hay-on-Wye’s castle

It is a gorgeous town in Wales where there are many nice bookshops. ‘Town of books’. In 1962 Richard Booth (you can see a picture of his gorgeous bookshop that also has a lovely coffee-shop in my previous post) came and decided to open a bookshop. Many others bookseller followed suit, and now Hay runs an international literary festival every year, which has sometimes even been exported to other countries, and has become a haven for book lovers.

The clock tower in Hay

The clock tower in Hay

I would love to run a bookstore (the thing is complicated but what worthwhile thing isn’t) and I fell in love when I visited the place. Despite how much I like books, I have never had a business and I thought the best way to learn would be to dive right in. The first time I visited there I talked to Anne (co-owner of Addyman Books, in fact she and Derek have two more bookstores, Addyman Annex and Murder and Mayhem, of which there is also a photo in the previous post) and I told her I’d like to become a bookseller and to learn the business. After thinking about it, talking to friends (hello Sumi!) and thinking about it a bit more, I decided to get in touch with Anne. We spoke, I came back to see her … and now I have been here for a couple of weeks, learning the business of second-hand bookshops and enjoying life in the paradise of books.

One of the hens

One of the hens

I hope to do a few posts explaining how things are going. Right now I’m at Annie’s (no, not the same one), with Mike, Flora the cat, Ivy the dog and four hens who are great escapists (I used to find them outside more often than in the henhouse, although now their enclose has been reinforced and it’s like Fort Knox). I have spent most of the time in the Annex, but on Friday the 13th (very appropriate) I was covering ‘Muder and Mayhem’ a fantastic store, so I leave you some pictures.

Inside of 'Murder and Mayhem' a genre bookshops with plenty of atmosphere

Inside of ‘Murder and Mayhem’ a genre bookshop with plenty of atmosphere

Props in 'Muder and Mayhem'

Props in ‘Muder and Mayhem’

Oh, and the link to Addyman Books (although the website is undergoing some work).
http://www.hay-on-wyebooks.com/

Thanks for reading, and if you’ve enjoyed it, like, share, comment and  CLICK! And if you’re nearby, come and say hello!

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As you will remember I have been thinking about bookshops recently and I wrote a post asking people what their ideal bookshop would be like. Not happy with that, I decided to ask one of the groups in Goodreads (UK group, thanks all) what would their ideal bookshop be like. Apart from fantastic thoughts and ideas, they also told me I had to visit Hay-on-Wye. Hay had been on my list for a long time and with my friend Sumi we had been talking about visiting their literary festival for several years, but we’ve never managed to make our schedules work (or only remembered far too late, as it books in advance, year on year it seems). I didn’t need much convincing and finally booked myself in for a weekend in Hay.

And I can tell you, they were right. Even if you don’t like books, you’d still like Hay. Just over the border in South Wales, it is a beautiful town, with an old market, great shops (evidently over 40 bookshops, but also clothes, crafts, local foods…), great pubs and restaurants…Even the cinema is fabulous, with stone walls and the most comfortable seats I’ve tried in a cinema for ages (and it has a bar…in case that makes a difference).

Granted, the weather wasn’t too great, but it’s October and Wales, so…not too cold either.

I can’t tell you how much I loved it. The sheds/like bookshops, the little ones, the ones like corridors, the thematic ones, the gorgeous/temple like ones, the Penguin one, the pink one…

And I was talking to one of the owners of the Addyman Books shops (they have 3, including one dedicated to crime: ‘Murder and Mayhem’,  the first picture in the post) who was really welcoming, encouraging, talked about how the business had changed, how now you have to be in the internet, how after 30 years in the business the US Library of Congress had ordered a book from them, how it is hard work but if you really love it and have ideas…She told me that all writers wanted to own bookshops and all bookshop owners wanted to be writers, and told me that they were always looking for enthusiastic and intelligent people who could plan events, etc. And yes, getting hands on experience would be good in her opinion.

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In case you haven’t worked it out yet, I’m one of those writers who’d like to own a bookshop. At the moment collecting ideas, we shall see.

I share a few of the pictures I took with you. They will probably keep coming…

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Thanks for reading, and if you have enjoyed it, please, like, comment, and share!

(Oh, and thanks to the owners of the Rothbury B&B for their hospitality. Lovely house and I’d never before tried a bath with feet!)

Link to my previous post on bookshops:

https://olganm.wordpress.com/2013/10/01/what-would-your-ideal-bookshop-be-like-please-comment/

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