Literary Notes #11

I promise you that I have been thinking about getting those trip pictures posted and am working my way through.  Here’s the entry on Peterhof.

Since we’ve been back, life has been crazy.  I’ve been working a lot as has Scotty and in the midst of it all it’s Festival Season here in Edinburgh.  There are dozens of festivals going on: the world-famous Fringe Festival and International Festivals, the Political Festival, the Foodies Festival, the Jazz and Blues Festival, Art Festival, Mela Festival, Story Telling Festival, and dozens more.  It’s overwhelming.  Since we’ve moved here Scotty and I have fled Edinburgh each August but this year I’m trying to embrace it.  We have been to a few events including a stand-up comic (who was really good), to a couple band performances, and I’m going to a one-woman show by an art teacher who relays her experiences working in NYC schools while President Bush’s “No Child Left Behind” doctrine was in effect.  Should be interesting.  Last year I attended three Fringe events and they were all awful.  Seriously awful.  So this year I’m taking a much more measured approach.  I’m only attending events that come highly recommended from people I trust.  And I’m pretty much sticking with the International Book Festival (I know you’re all so surprised).  Every year they host Amnesty International‘s Imprisoned Writers series and I’ve attended readings from imprisoned writers in America and China.  Tonight it’s Israel and Palestine.  So very interesting and some of the readings are quite moving.  I also attended at talk by Hilary Spurling where she spoke about her new biography of Pearl Buck.  As a child I loved Buck’s The Good Earth and it was fascinating to learn more about this author.  The first woman to be awarded the Pulitzer and Nobel prizes for literature, I’m inspired to go back to that childhood favorite and reread it.  There are several other authors that we’ve booked tickets to hear and I’m feeling more and more like I’m getting what this festival thing is all about.  There really is a lot of junk – I’d say easily 95% of whats on offer is going to be pretty terrible – at least to me.  So I’m sticking with things I love (books and authors) and branching out in a few limited directions and it’s been a good approach for me.  One more event I’m excited about is Fair Trade, a play directed by Emma Thompson, which tells the story of two British women who were trafficked into the sex trade here in the UK.

So that’s the scoop on what’s up here in Edinburgh.  It’s good and busy.

About Rebecca

Hi! After five years in Europe, I'm adjusting to life back in the US. I use this blog to record my adventures, post photos, organize recipes, and post about things that interest me.
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2 Responses to Literary Notes #11

  1. Hilary says:

    I heard an interview with Hilary Spurling on NPR. She was talking about her biography on Buck. It sounds like such an amazing book. Buck’s life was extraordinary. I really want to read the the book. I’ve read The Good Earth every year for the past 3 years while teaching it to my students. Did you know it is part of a trilogy? A few of my students have gone on and read the other two parts, and have really enjoyed them. They are on the list to read as well. Would love to hear more about the talk Spurling gave!

  2. POP says:

    The Good Earth was the only book I remember reading in high school. “Don’t sale the land…….”

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