Thursday 23 February 2012

Meeting Steve Cole

Today was the last day of our 'Children's Book Festival' but what an ending it was, we certainly know how to go out with a bang.

I got to the library this morning and furniture was once again being moved out of the way, and chairs set out, and cupboards were checked for tea and coffee supplies.
Today was going to be our busiest yet, but it was going to be awesome.

Author Steve Cole (pictured above) was due to arrive at 9.45, but I wouldn't be there to see him arrive. I had another Maisy Mouse event at a local Nursery group and had to leave at 9.15. I was gutted I was going to miss Steve and wondered if I could get back in time to see the last half, but it wasn't possible. I knew he had more sessions with us that day but I was convinced they were all out at local schools, so imagine my delight when I was told that his next session was actually in the library again. YAY!

The nursery event was great, there were 23 children there and only 1 was scared of Maisy. I arrived back at the library to see the class finishing up. I had missed Steve Cole's first session. :(  But it was OK, I had the next one to look forward to.

I wasn't down to be on the desk counter in the library for the next couple of hours, but I had some stock work that I could do at the desk so I carried a stack of books and barcodes and book jackets out the front and set up. This way I could still do my work but watch Steve at the same time.

Steve Cole is the author of many books from his 'Cows In Action' series, 'Astrosaurs' series, 'Slime Squad' series, Z.Rex, Doctor Who books and many more.

The kids filed in just after 11, it was a fairly small group but Steve made them very welcome and immediately lit the room up. Whoever said Libraries were quiet places clearly hadn't met Steve but we loved it. It's a great feeling to hear laughter and see the smiles of kids enjoying themselves and being interested in books.

During the next hour I hardly stopped laughing. Steve could be on stage, he is a great entertainer.
 I inwardly groaned every time someone came to the desk with books as it meant I had to divert my attention away from Steve to serve them. (should I admit that?) oh well.
Anyway, the kids had a great time and so did all the staff. I have never seen anyone with so much energy and a real spark for life and books. Some photos were taken but we haven't uploaded them yet. I am next in on Saturday so will do them then and see if I can use any on here and update it.

Anyway, he agreed to give autographs to the kids and I left for lunch with a smile on my face, but one regret was that I didn't get my picture taken with him. I couldn't stick around though as I had to eat so i could get back and get ready for the final Maisy Mouse event in the afternoon, there were 22 kids at that group, one of which kept holding my 'paw', think I made a friend. :D The kids all decorated mouse ears and attached them with a band round their head, so we ended up with our own group of mice. 

Steve had another session in the afternoon but this one was out at a school, to my delight he came back afterwards and asked for a group photo of the staff, three of us crowded under the display board with Steve and had our photo taken. It was done on his camera so I have to wait for him to upload it before I can get a copy, so I will be stalking his blog, which is here, if you want to read it too. (you should, go on!
UPDATE: here is the picture, and Steve's blog post featuring our library is here
Smiles all round!

I spent nearly all of today smiling. The furniture has now been put back and normality has returned, but we were all left on such a high of excitement, such great memories made. So overall it was a manic but very enjoyable day.
It's clear how much the kids enjoyed it when later in the afternoon we had some of them come back in with their parents to borrow his books to read. What a success!!!

So here ends our Library Festival fortnight and I can say it was a cracker, Magic Shows, Zoolab, Manga Workshops, Maisy Mouse on tour, Authors Knife & Packer, the wonderful Sarah McIntyre (see yesterday's post) and of course Steve Cole. Thanks to them all.
We even got to keep the picture Sarah Mcintyre did and one from authors Knife & Packer who visited earlier in the week, so we are going to get them specially laminated and displayed. 


Unknown said...

Thank you for such a lovely write-up, Becky! Do you think if any more children come to borrow my books you could mention I'm talking at Waterstones in Bedford on Fri 2nd March, at 6pm? That would be very kind.

Steve x

barmybex said...

No problem! I will of course give it a mention. :D Sure they would love to come see you.
Thanks again for a great day.