Meet the 2017 Authors! Richard Byrne


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Who are you most looking forward to seeing at the 2017 Festival?

There are a few of my hero’s appearing at the festival (including James Naughtie, Jon Ronson, Jon Klassen, Andy Stanton and Francesca Simon) but I’m especially looking forward to seeing authors I don’t know and, of course, lots of children too!

Which book has inspired you the most?

The books that I particularly never grew out of are the Peanuts series by Charles Schultz. His uniquely imagined world of characters, beautifully drawn and with such a great sense of humour, is something I often go back to for inspiration or just a good old laugh.

What is the first thing you do when you wake up in the morning?

A cup of tea in bed. My partner and I take turns to get up and make it so the best days are when it’s my turn to have it brought to me. We sit, looking at birds in the tree tops outside and talk about the day ahead.

What is your life’s motto?

Life is not a rehearsal (which I invariably forget on most days).

Our theme for the 2017 Festival is Journeys. Can you tell us which journeys in your life have been most memorable? 

Some of my smallest journeys have been the most significant. I vividly remember the drive from our house to the hospital as my partner went into labour for the first time. It was a beautiful June morning and the clock on the local church was at 4 o’clock. Life was about to become very different. Another memorable journey was a slow meandering stroll down The High Line in NYC with my partner and our 2 kids on her big birthday. It was another beautiful day full of sun, city life, flowers, art and ice cream – perfect!