6 essential adults events from EIBF

Neil Gaiman - photo by chrisdonia
Category: Reading

This is hard. I’ve managed to get it down to six but it still feels a bit wrong as there are so many more events that I’m desperate to see in the 17 days from 10-26 August. Tickets for Edinburgh International Book Festival went on sale this morning, so some of these events may already be sold out by the time you are reading this, but don't despair, there really are hundreds of other great events to find. Let me know the ones you are most looking forward to in the comments below. Here's my essential six:


The Independence Debate with Kirsty Wark, Tuesday 13, 16.30

An opportunity to participate in what will hopefully be a passionate and constructive discussion. EIBF debates are excellent so I have a feeling this will rise above the usual unseemly scrapping.


Ali Smith, Saturday 17, 12.00

One of my favourite writers, Ali’s events are as beautiful, exuberant and original as her writing. I’m very intrigued and excited by her new book, Shire, which includes poetry, fiction and images.


Robin Robertson, Sunday 18, 10.15

Listening to Robin Robertson read is my ultimate poetry experience. I usually need a stiff drink afterwards but as it’s on a Sunday morning, I’ll just have to lie down on the grass to recover.


Iwona Blazwick and Cornelia Parker, Thursday 22, 20.30

Anyone who exhibits Tilda Swinton in a glass case automatically achieves iconic status for me and Cornelia Parker is no exception. In this event, a collaboration with the brilliant Edinburgh Art Festival, she’s talking to Iwona Blazwick of the Whitechapel Gallery about her work.


Rutu Modan and Leanne Shapton, Monday 26, 14.00

Part of the Stripped series of events focusing on comics and graphic novels, this event brings together two unique artists. I’m more familiar with Leanne Shapton and her very inventive work, but Rutu Modan looks just as intriguing.


Margaret Atwood and Neil Gaiman, Monday 26, 16.30

I literally gasped when I saw this event was taking place. Two of the world’s most amazing and fearless storytellers in conversation about why and how they write. I will do anything to get my hands on a ticket. Both are also taking on the role of Guest Selector for the 2013 Festival so look at the programme for other events imbued with their absolute brilliance.