Well, that was the weekend that was! I finally #poppedmyharrogatecherry! What a weekend – I have been buzzing since the countdown before it and you know what I reckon I’m going to be buzzing until it happens all over again in 2017! I cannot wait!
Packed my essentials on the Thursday night…
It’s hard to describe exactly how awesome the weekend was, it was everything and more that I imagined it would be and I was like the kid in the candy shop drooling over all those authors just hanging out there! My eyes were out on stalks half the time and I had to keep picking my jaw up off the floor every 2 minutes! Of course a couple of things happened over the weekend that made it even more special but I will come to those in a minute!
After a hyper drive (thanks to Angela for driving and Katie for making us laugh all the way) from Glasgow we arrived in Harrogate – it was hot hot hot and it was straight to The Old Swan to let the fun begin!
Well I just got into the hotel and grabbed ourselves a wee “tipple” when I heard the dulcet London tones of a certain Mrs Fenton – “Oi Bairden” and I knew that I had been spotted! While all the admin team from #TBConFB were sadly not all able to attend, those who were there were a glam bunch! Tracy is taking “Glesga Patter” lessons for next year as I can’t afford to bring a translator with me #innittracy!
Much of day one was spent in awe and in a state of disbelief that I was actually there! So many authors, TBCers and Bloggers! I was so excited but so overwhelmed that I think my nerves got the better of my and I bricked it too many times to just go up and approach people and say hi! (I will know better next time round!) But I did get to meet the awesome S Williams, author of Tuesday Falling #bringbacktuesday and the talented Caroline Mitchell, author of the Jennifer Knight series – Steven Williams is so bloody cool and Caroline is adorable – loved them both – sorry if I was a gibbering idiot guys!
Queens of Tartan Noir, Lin Anderson and Val McDermid were both at the festival and while I did speak to Lin in the passing I was just to overwhelmed to ask for a picture…could really kick myself! So when Val was signing some books I made myself go and speak to her and gibbered nonsense about popping my Harrogate cherry and getting my picture with her! Luckily she took it all in her stride and was absolutely lovely!
But the best was yet to come! You may have heard that I’m a HUGE fan of the bloody fantastic Steven Dunne and I was convinced all day that he was hiding from the #SAS in town so it was an OMFG moment when he came up to my while I was just standing looking about and said hi! I think my brain went into meltdown, I have no recollection of what I said and just hope that I wasn’t too embarrassing – I was a quivering wreck – but Sir Steven you totally made my weekend! Hopefully I’m forgiven for that awkward book signing moment though #stillblushing Having met Steven I can tell you he is a complete gentleman and a sweetheart and even better looking in person 🙂
Graham Smith, author of Snatched from Home also came over to chat, what a lovely guy he is, I’m so damn chuffed to be included in his forthcoming blog tour! Seriously he was so supportive of all the bloggers and the aspiring authors – a genuinely nice guy – it was a pleasure to meet him!
We only attended 2 events when we were there, The Dead Good Awards and The Late Night Quiz, but to be honest the best part of the event was just hanging around outside and soaking up the atmosphere!
Of course it wouldn’t have been the same if there hadn’t been an EEEEEEEEEEEEK OMFG moment and that came when I finally came face to face with my #Twinnie! aka Noelle of #Crimebookjunkie. Seriously separated at birth #partnersincrime – you could only tell us apart because of our accents! I am so delighted to have finally met her – she #rocks!
Chatted to some of the other brilliant bloggers that have been so supportive of me over the last few months, Sarah, Joanne, Shell, Angela, Claire and so many more, I can’t wait to meet you all again and get to know you all better!
One of my funniest moments was when #Twinnie and Alex agreed to join me in wrapping ourselves up in my crime scene tape and doing some #corpsing 🙂 So funny! #Harrogate watch out for next year’s event…
All in all it was the best weekend ever, so many happy memories and so good to be in the company of those who completely get my #weirdness! Roll on Harrogate 2017 – loved every minute of it! Next year I resolve to overcome my shyness and just grab every moment!
Top tips for the event:
- Don’t buy rover passes – just go and get the panel tickets you want on the day – I didn’t buy a rover pass but everyone who did said that they didn’t get the value out of it.
- The best of the event takes place in the grounds of the event, mingling with other readers, authors and bloggers – go, soak up the atmosphere and enjoy!
- Take a camera for pictures as your phone battery is so going to die with all the photo ops!
- Take a selfie stick for those group photo opportunities!
- Just go and speak to folk, everyone is so friendly and approachable – there are lots of new friendships just waiting to be made!
- Pack lightly – you will NOT need all the clothes you take – I promise you!
- Enjoy every damn moment of it and get the dates for the next year and get your time off work booked!