This weekend I attended Eastercon in Bradford. Drove up on Friday and took forever on the M1 to get there. Stopped for a nice lunch at The George in Kilsby though.
The writing workshop that I have previously run with the T-Party writing group wasn’t running this year and I hadn’t been invited onto any panels so I was completely free for all 4 days of the con. Inevitably this meant that a lot of time was spent in the bar. Much of it with Brian from SFF Chronicles http://www.sffchronicles.co.uk/forum/ and the greatly talented and completely mad Francis Knight http://www.francisknightbooks.co.uk The beer was a bit expensive and rather weak, but we were in an hotel. I went to a lot of panels, many aimed at teaching aspiring writers the craft of writing. While I hope I am familiar with what they were teaching, it never hurts to hear it again.
I also had a brief chat with my agent who had no news about my novel that is on submission. I talked with editors from several UK publishers and learned that Tor(UK) were inundated when they opened to unagented submissions – no surprise there. I wonder if they will end up buying anything that came in that way. Gollancz are getting plenty of epic fantasy but the demand for that is still strong, they aren’t seeing enough high quality epic SF.
Some of the organising folk from Nine Worlds http://www.nineworlds.co.uk a new London con were there and it seems likely that the T-Party will be running a writing workshop for them at their inaugural con in Aug. This looks like a very ambitious undertaking; they have booked 2 big hotels near Heathrow for it, having raised funds through Kickstarter.
I met loads of other people too and if I’ve not name-checked you then it’s because it is now midnight and I didn’t get much sleep over the weekend.
Oh, and Southampton beat Chelsea while I was away.