This past Sunday, I once again attended The Word on the Street Toronto, the free annual festival celebrating the best of Canadian writing and reading. This year, for the first time, WOTS took place at Harbourfront Centre, right on the shore of Lake Ontario. A beautiful venue, a stunning day and books for any and all tastes - it was guaranteed to be a good time!
The ride in the on the train proved to be quite rowdy as it was full of Blue Jays fans headed to the Rogers Centre for the final game in a weekend series against the Tampa Bay Rays. The Jays are currently in first place in the American League East Division and have their sights set on the League title and then the World Series. It's been 22 years since they made the playoffs (when they last won the World Series) and Toronto has been in a sports drought for a very long time (the Leafs last won the Stanley Cup in 1967) so fans are extremely excited to have an successful home town team. Did I mention the trip in was rowdy?
A beautiful day at Harbourfront Centre, more reminiscent of summer than fall:
The festival at a glance - so much bookish awesomeness all squeezed together in one park:
All aspects of publishing and reading were represented at WOTS. There were publishers and presses, both large and small in attendance.
The Harlequin tent was always hopping:
Penguin Random House with Ben McNally Books:
Dundurn Press, the largest Canadian owned publisher:
Montreal comic publisher, Drawn and Quarterly:
And many more...
Both the Toronto Public Library and the TPL workers had booths:
Several bookstores were in attendance, including Mabel's Fables, a well-known local children's bookstore:
Many writing associations and organizations attended, showcasing their authors and their books, as well as their services. I helped man the Crime Writers of Canada booth for part of the day.
The Writer's Community of York Region:
The Writer's Community of Durham Region:
The Ontario Writers' Conference and The Writers' Union of Canada:
Toronto Sisters In Crime and the Toronto Romance Writers:
Canadian Authors Association and the Science Ficton Writers:
There were even some other tents that made for a nice eclectic mix.
The theater crowd with Mirvish Productions, the biggest theater production company in town:
The Royal Ontario Museum was on hand with several centurions, promoting their terrific Pompeii exhibit:
And Amnesty International had a tent showcasing some of the many ways they work to expose and prevent human rights abuses:
There were a number of tents with presentations ranging from live readings to discussions of current events to awards:
We had a very good crowd pretty much the whole time, but I took advantage of a quick break at one point to grab a picture of the Crime Writers of Canada booth. Lovely authors Sharon Crawford and Caro Soles were signing with me.
Thanks to the Crime Writers of Canada for organizing our part in WOTS and thanks to the many readers who came out to meet new and favourite authors and purchase their work. We all had a great time and are looking forward to next year!