Hey cHEwY gum gums

Festivals are always the highlights of my cHEwY journey, I’m flying off to one now, the Fitzroy Children’s Literature Festival. People often ask me if I had any advice on how to survive festivals, especially the ones that are run over a few days, like the Somerset celebration of literature. So, with the help of one of my publicists from Penguin Random House, here are some tips.

1. Post and #tag: It’s 2017, so I’m assuming that you’ll be one social media platform, if not on more. Each festival has their own profile and hashtag so use them frequently. Don’t forget to mention your publishers too (shoutout @penguinbooksaus lol) Social media is also a great way to stalk other authors, and quickly see what they’ve done. It’s nice to add new friends and stalk them afterwards.

2. Be prepared: Plan and rehearse your talk or panel conversation. Usually you’ll get a group email about panels, so it’s a chance to cover what you’ll be talking about. Also stock up with bookmarks, stickers or other merch for your book. You can also make your own too 🙂

3. Talk to everybody: There’s something special about these festivals when authors and illustrators from all over come together, it’s a great chance to make some new friends! Any other time, it would be awkward, but hey you’re a fellow guest, so feel free to freak out and fanboy/girl when you meet someone super famous (like what I’m gonna do when I meet Lauren Child at Sydney Writers Festival next month).

4. Time out for yourself: You don’t have to be switched on all the time. You can chill in the author’s green room on your own, or retreat somewhere. I usually go on jogs to unwind, or I play Xbox One or Nintendo Wii U in my hotel room late at night haha. But you don’t have to go to every little unofficial drinks or event. You need to have some energy for your talks and panels.

5. Watch other authors and illustrators: If you have a chance, check out some other authors and see how they do their thing. You’ll be learning heaps and pick up a few tips for your own presentation.

Oh, what should I do about my presentation? 

Well…I’ll get into that in another blog post haha.





About the author

I'm an author, stand-up comedian and teacher. My books include Thai-riffic!, Con-nerd, Punchlines and The Other Christy. I'm a massive Nintendo fan and love eating burgers. Follow me on Twitter or Instagram @oliverwinfree

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