Book Festivals and Birthdays

Ann H Gabhart Ann's Posts, One Writer's Journal

It’s a great thing to be two and have a cake that matches your dress and to blow out candles and hear everybody cheer. That has to be a great thing! And I get to help another granddaughter celebrate a birthday this weekend. I’m one blessed grandmother.

 ~~ It was a busy Saturday with birthday parties and the Redbud Festival. I always enjoy going to Barbourville and sitting on Writers’ Row with so many friend writers. But the writers aren’t the only creative people at the festival. There are craftsmen and women of all kinds. Dulcimer makers and players. Wood carvers. Gourd decorators. Jewelry makers. Somebody there was even making marshmallow shooters. I figured I’d be in big trouble if I got those for my grandkids. Marshmallows everywhere. Besides I always want to get the books. So many great books to entice me. But one of the highlights of the Redbud Festival is the quilts. Artists with needles. I didn’t get the name of the artist below, but she had created some beautiful quilts. She told me the name of the pattern of the one on top in the middle. “Hearts and blooms.” So pretty. So perfect.

 ~~ I know about quilting. When I was a little girl, my aunt made a quilt every winter. She’d set up the quilting frame in the living room by the coal burning stove and spend hours making perfect stitches. She let me make a few passes with the needle, but I’m sure she picked out my awkward stitches after I went home and did them over. I have a quilt she made for me the year I was born. I treasure it.

~~ I’ve never made a quilt and if I did it would just be pieces of cloth sewn in squares – on a sewing machine. Nothing to compare to the artwork you see here. Of course they do have machines that quilt now. I don’t know if this lady used one of those or not, but just seeing her quilts hanging made my day at the Redbud Festival more fun.

 ~~ Spring is a busy time for book festivals. I’m going to be at Southern Kentucky Book Fest in Bowling Green this weekend. They’ve got an impressive line-up of authors. Judith Viorst, author of many popular kids’ books. Nicholas Sparks of Notebook fame. Jean Auel who wrote those Clan of the Cave Bear books. And I’m looking forward to seeing T.J. Stiles who wrote the Pulitzer Prize winning book The First Tycoon about Cornelius Vanderbilt. That might be a great birthday gift for somebody. It’s fun having family members who love books the way I do. Of course I have a birthday every year too. Then besides the headliners, I’ll get to see writer friends. We’ll get to talk about deadlines and rewrites and editing and new releases. And on top of all that fun, I generally get some reading friends who stop by my table to say hello. That’s the best part of all. So if you’re in the Southern Kentucky area on Saturday, come by and say hello and make me smile.

 ~~ If you were organizing a book festival, what famous writer would you want to be there? And what question would you ask him or her?