In Edinburgh it is festival time.

Well, actually, it’s almost always festival time here. We can’t move for the things. We’ve got an art one, a film one, an international one, a fringe one, a book one, a jazz one, a magic one, a science one, a Mela one, and a Hogmanay one. But August is when we have the International, Fringe, Book and Mela festivals all at once, so I’m going to go ahead and refer to this month in particular as ‘festival time’.

This is my eighth August living in Edinburgh, but having thousands of writers and artists descend on the city each year still results in sensory overload. I tried to assemble some of my thoughts and feelings on the matter into a listicle, because I know that’s how The Kidz like to imbibe information these days.

The Edinburgh Festival Feels like:

That feeling when you have to breathe deep and count to ten if you accidentally find yourself on North or South Bridge because how is it possible that there are 900 men with waxed moustaches and top hats standing at the crossroads and not a single one knows where it is they are trying to go and for the love of marmalade why will they not MOVE

That feeling when you go to hang around one of the festival venues on the first weekend to soak up some Fringe ambience and the cheapest pint sets you back £5.70

Screen shot from CBBC show 'Sorry I've Got No Head'

That feeling when everyone you know seems to be doing a show, and you are not doing a show, and you wonder whether you should put on a show next year but you aren’t sure anyone would want to sit through an hour of your nonsense stories

That feeling when you spend an hour scheduling tweets promoting your partner’s show instead of writing a submission for a deadline tomorrow, because you’ve seen so much theatre and comedy and spoken word of varying quality and length that you can’t organize your thoughts, and although you’ve spent several hours working on this the words look childish and unreal on the page

That feeling when you make a poetry video in about 24 hours because your partner has been asked to produce one ‘for marketing purposes’

That feeling when you go to your friends’ shows and spend hours hoping and praying it will be good so you don’t have to lie to them

That feeling when the lovely people at Story Shop, who got you up on a stage at the Edinburgh International Book Festival this time last year, email to ask people to share stories of what you’ve achieved since, and it turns out you’re the Story Shop failure with only 9 submissions since then (lazy), 6 rejections and 3 acceptances (2 of which were from your partner’s podcast so they hardly count)

That feeling when there is so much going on you have to jump into it headfirst, enjoy it for what it is, put irritation, worry and doubt aside as you come to the realisation you can sleep in September.


Do you have any Fringe feelings you want to share? Drop me a comment below!