Countdown on to festival

This time tomorrow I’ll be at the Aotea Centre in Auckland picking up a media pass for the Auckland Writers and Readers Festival. It’s been a busy time arranging interviews and working with publicists and it’s going to be a fascinating taste of the literary world. It is always an experience meeting writers and finding out a little of how they go about their work, and hearing them read their own work is usually a real treat.

Brief wondrous lifeI’m really looking forward to meeting Junot Diaz – it’ll be on either Friday morning or Saturday. If it’s Saturday it will be after he’s been on Kim Hill’s show, so I hope he’s not been grilled to exhaustion.

Thomas Kohnstamm will also be interesting – especially after the ruckus over his latest book, but I am also making time to see lots of the New Zealand talent. But who will the hidden gem of the festival be? There will be media darlings and headline writers, but often there are some who fly a bit beneath the radar who surprise and delight… Here’s hoping!

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