This Hay Festival is slightly different from the 2010 that I attended. For starters this festival is one week long as opposed to the 3-day affair it was back then. And this time around there is a food court plus various many other food booths dotted around the venue as opposed to two years ago where I had to go to town about a couple of miles away to get a can of coke! Though the grounds layout was exactly the same as it was then. But the bestest thing about it is that I got to meet Cassandra Clare, Philippa Gregory and Maggie Stiefvater! Plus I got a signed book from each! OMG!!!! *squee* The organization that I saw two years ago is still evident but maybe because there are so many more people and events and authors and sponsors to manage this time around, it has gotten just a little frayed at the edges now. But it seems that the organizers are good at thinking on their feet and compensating, plus I think they have enough manpower to pull off a last minute ditch that they needed to do to cope. The result, as far as I can see, was organized chaos and good fun!! Fun for us festival goers and a big, nasty ulcer that bores through the layers of the stomach of the organizers (I imagine). And loads of enterprising locals.Festival Link(s):
The festival ran the usual gauntlet of author talks and panel presentations. A detailed schedule is in the thick programme you can buy for a pound at the entrance. Plus there is a big screen of schedule updates constantly running at the main foyer. The strange thing I noticed though is that, the festival seems to lack the presence of big publishers. I saw Google's banner, but not Penguin, or Simon & Schuster, or Orion. I find it really strange for a book festival not to have book publishers getting involved in it. It was the same two years ago. I don't know whether this is the organizer's choice or the publishers just didn't want the exposure of this particular festival... can anybody fill me in on this? Because this particular quirk of this book festival just dumb-founded me...