Attending the Kendal Mountain Festival after being nominated for the Boardman Tasker Award was one of the most enjoyable and gratifying experiences I've had as a writer.
I was astonished to learn that the book had made the shortlist, since it has a mountain in it but very little mountaineering. But that was nothing compared to when I arrived and began to hear, over the course of the weekend, all the gracious and generous things people said about the book.
At times I could hardly keep my emotions in check. Every writer wants to think that he or she has written a book that touches other people, that makes them feel some of the things the writer felt. But writers almost never hear about that happening. Talking with people at the festival who had never set eyes on Mount St. Helens and would probably never go there but nevertheless felt that my book was deserving of recognition, even if it meant leaving other deserving books off the list - well, that was an overwhelming experience for me, one I'll always remember.