Last night was amazing!! Not only did I get to spend time with two very close friends, but I also had the privilege of meeting one of my favourite authors, Deborah Harkness, who wrote A Discovery of Witches and Shadow of Night. Deborah Harkness is a professor of history at the University of Southern California and is the recipient of numerous awards and fellowships. Her publications include works on the history of science, magic and alchemy. A Discovery of Witches is an adult novel about witches, vampires, and daemons, which offers an unexpected answer to the question, “If there really are vampires, what do they do for a living?” She ties the story in with true facts from history and science which make the idea of vampires and witches actually believable. If aren’t familiar with this series, I highly recommend that you give it a try. Just make sure that you have lots of free time because I guarantee you won’t be able to put it down!!
From October 18-28th, Harbourfront Centre on the waterfront in Toronto, Ontario is hosting the International Festival of Authors. This year was the 33rd annual IFOA, and it is a festival filled with readings, interviews, round table discussion and book signings. This year there are over 190 participants taking part in over 70 events. This was my first time attending, and I wish I lived closer so that I could have taken in more than just the one event. However, it was about a 2 hour drive for me on a dark and rainy night, so I was happy just to be there at all.
My friend from work, Marcy, and I left at 3pm and headed for the city where we picked up my childhood friend, Jan, who has recently moved back from 13 years (I think it’s around that) living in Australia. It’s been a long time since I’ve seen Jan, so it was a wonderful reunion. We hit an Irish pub for dinner and then headed up to the Fleck Dance Theatre, where we were treated to readings from five different authors. Of course, our main objective was to hear Deborah Harkness speak, and she is an amazing orator, but the other authors proved to be very entertaining as well.
Afterwards, we were able to meet the authors and have our books signed. It was a huge thrill and honour for the three of us to meet Deborah Harkness, even more so when we discovered what a wonderful and friendly person she is. She chatted with us about her writing like we were old friends and had no problem with us taking photos of her. Below is a photo of me (left) with Deborah as well as a photo of my book which she autographed. It was certainly a night that I will never forget!!