[Toronto International Book Fair] — Journal: Day 1 (Nov 14)

TIBF - Welcome Sign

Greetings to you!

As a continuation to yesterdays journal log [which you can read about here], I’ll be throwing out some moments from the first day of funsies. (And also: you know when you haven’t seen someone in ages and it’s like whoa we need to talk about everything and nothing at the same time? That was basically me and Savindi (The Streetlight Reader) during the commute down; since I haven’t seen her since high school (basically another lifetime ago). Good catching up.)

swarms of childrenFor the duration of my shift, I was one of the individuals standing by the entrance (being an escalator) scanning for admittance/re-admittance into the fair floor. Surprisingly, time went by pretty quick. But then there were times that everything seemed to slow, perhaps for dramatic effect, when personalities like Jeanne Beker and Gayle Forman (amongst others that I probably didn’t recognize but had presenter badges) are mixed into the crowds wanting access up the escalator. No biggie. Also cool when they say something to you. Not star struck at all. Not at all… There were also two other conventions happening in the same area/building, being the New Democratic Party convention and the Gentlemen’s Expo (many of us were perplexed as to what that would have entailed). There were also swarms and swarms and swarms of children in attendance for the school day, with Jeff Kinney (Diary of a Wimpy Kid) being the talk among the kids.

Crowd at Jeff Kinney Panel

Part way through, I was running some ad-hoc things and got a chance to sit briefly at a panel on the Discovery Stage: “Human Rights For Young Readers”, with Karen Levine speaking about “Hana’s Suitcase” and Rosemary McCarney talking about “Every day is Malala Day” (amongst others). They spoke adamantly about writing kid-in a manner that it becomes accessible to children in allowing them to be their own human rights activist by their own coming. And while it is a scary world out there, there’s a fine line between transparency and ignorance to knowledge; especially regarding what kids should question and ought to question.

After my shift ended and eating a bunch of complimentary pizza (thanks for feeding my stomach, TIBF!) Savindi and I perused a bit in the exhibitors booths before taking a break in front of the on-going Panel with Kelley Armstrong, Nick Cutter, Maureen Jennings, Andrew Pyper, and Peter Robinson. While I wasn’t listening closely to their talks, I did hear passing thoughts delving into the broad topics of “what the ideal reader is” and “writing a book in which you would want to read”.

That was basically my night at the festival, amongst other random things like chugging aloe drinks, eating biryani rice and [finally] watching the latest episode of How to Get Away with Murder.

Thanks for following on this experience and onward to the next day!


Disclaimer: Photo-cred taken from the Inspire! TIBF Facebook group.



2 thoughts on “[Toronto International Book Fair] — Journal: Day 1 (Nov 14)”

  1. Haha, Gentlemen’s Expo. I’m picturing monocles and mustaches, but that’s probably not it at all!

    This sounds like fun, wish we had big bookish events like this!


    1. Your description might possibly be accurate for small percentage of patronage attending. It’s basically a giant man cave after all (I think there was a “Man Cave” doormat…).

      TIBF was great! It’s no Book Expo America but with the Canadian market being smaller, I guess it’ll do. There’s no harm in trying to start your own event if you have time in your busy life to do it.


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