There are certain things guaranteed to put a smile on your face first thing in the morning. Opening some mail from the previous day and finding a cheque for £100 made payable to Manx Litfest and an accompanying note saying 'every little helps!' is right up there with the best of them.
The kind-hearted soul who sent the cheque and note asked to remain anonymous, so we can't divulge any details, but it is a most welcome donation towards the costs of putting on Litfest 2013.
Fast forward to tonight, and we're looking at the first typed up, day-by-day draft schedule for the festival weekend of September 26-29. Much of it we've already thrashed out with those involved, but there are still several aspects to be finalised and some venue issues to sort out.
There have been emails today from visiting guests with information about their flights/airports, and so our spreadsheet of authors/poets/performers continues to be filled out as each part of the festival planning slots into place.
We're also turning our eye to the schools day on the Friday of Litfest (September 27). We have a team of authors and poets ready to go out around schools (25 at last count) to deliver a host of talks, readings and workshops and we're about to launch into the job of marrying the authors and poets up with the schools. Last year most of our team visited three schools each during the day - it will most likely be a similar situation again this year.
Our other eye is well and truly focused on the Royal Manx Agricultural Show at Knockaloe this coming Friday and Saturday (August 9/10). We'll be there with our partner bookseller, Bridge Bookshop in Port Erin, and as with the Southern Show a couple of weeks ago, we'll have tickets to some events on sale and books by Litfest authors.
If you're in the west over the weekend, feel free to pop in and talk books. We'll happily indulge you.