Oops! Over a week since the event and I haven’t said a word about it yet. Ho hum, you know how it gets when you’re busy.
Edge-Lit 3, a fantastic event which took place at Derby Quad on July 19. It seems – to me – to have taken the place of Alt Fiction, but it is still the same incredible mix of spec fiction. You have horror, fantasy and sci-fi and all the wonderful bits in between.
I had an AMAZING time! I forgot how much fun these events are and feel somewhat sad that Dave had to give me a series of gentle nudges to go (a bit like he did with the first Alt Fiction I attended, without which I would never have met Maria who introduced me to the Phoenix Writers).
The full list of events and panels is here (I hope I’m allowed to post this by the way, let me know, Alex) but I can talk to you in brief about the bits I attended.
In The Old Spirit – Ghost Stories Today
I’ve never been massively into ghost stories, though I have written a couple in my time. What was most interesting about this panel was hearing Andrew David Barker, Johnny Mains, Marie O’Regan and Niki Valentine chat about ghost stories (I’m sure I’ve cocked up here and left off a name… I’ll check it out). What stories mean to them and how they’ve changed over the years.
It also brought to my attention the Boo Books anthology call, which makes me think I should brush off the ghost story I wrote a little while ago and send it in. Worst they can say is ‘no thanks’, right?
Science Fiction: How Much Science Do You Need?
According to Jaine Fenn, Tricia Sullivan, Jon Courtenay Grimwood and Rod Rees, not all that much. Which is very comforting to me. Someone once told me that sci-fi is just like fantasy; substitute woods and cities for spaceships and planets, dragons for aliens and orcs for even more aliens and you’ve done it. Oh, and of course use lots of names with ‘x’ in them somewhere. o.O
While it’s advice one should obviously take with a heft spoonful of salt 😉 it’s nice to know that one doesn’t necessarily have to have a science background to write sci-fi. I have a degree in Geology, it’s a science degree, but if I want to talk about warp drives, worm holes and cyberware then I can do that if I want. So long as I put in a suitable amount of research. I think part of me knew that, but having it confirmed is really nice.
Tricia Sullivan – Walking The Walk: Keep Yourself Writing (Workshop)
I think I misunderstood what this workshop was about when I signed up for it. When I arrived and Tricia explained why we were there I realised that I don’t have a problem writing. If anything I have trouble stopping and there are times when my family (and the cleanliness of my house and my health) suffers for it.
Yes, I have trouble finishing things sometimes (lets not talk about WTRE right now) but by and large I have a good and regular turn out of words.
But I’m so, so glad I went. Listening to people talk about their problems and understanding that I’m not alone was incredibly valuable. And I’ve also put together an email list of some of the attendees of that workshop so we can chat together and support each other going forward. Probably the most valuable non valuable workshop I’ve ever attended. 🙂 Besides that, Tricia might just be my new hero; totally down to earth, matter of fact and above all, genuinely keen to help other authors.
Simon Clark – Write For Life: Building A Writing Career (Workshop)
Another workshop I didn’t necessarily need. A lot of the tips Simon gave I have heard before (I should stop signing up for similar workshops every year!) but there is some detail in that I hadn’t considered before. Mainly about being ‘cheeky’ and pushing your luck. You never know what opportunities it might generate.
Fighting For Writers (Demo)
I had soooooooo much fun with these ladies. ^_^ Lots and lots (AND LOTS) of swords. I have tonnes of pictures but my favourite of the session has to be this one:I fell in love with that sword and from a writer’s point of view, it was VERY helpful to learn more about European martial arts and the swords of weapons my characters in the Saar’s Legacy trilogy might be using as they step away from Ptolemaic Egypt.
So that was my (last-last) Saturday. I also won a couple of books at the raffle and got permission from Alex (THANK YOU!) to riffle through the goodie bags at the end and have myself a mighty handful of free books that I plan to enjoy over the coming months.
Jeez… that’s a lot of links! If you spot any that don’t work as they should or point to the wrong place would you mind letting me know? I haven’t had a cup of tea yet which means, despite my checking, I may have messed one up. Ta. xSaying that, however, I’m not sure that I’ll have time to read many of those books going forward. I have a lot to be getting on with and not much time to do it.
I’m still in a funk with WTRE. I don’t know why, but my productivity has plummeted in that regard. If I had continued at the pace I started I would have finished this draft two weeks ago. 😦
Work on WTRE: at least 1,000 words per working day (five days)
Actually, I should stop whining. I made my 5,000 words, which is all I wanted to do. But, in the back of my mind I remain aware that I used to do upwards of 15,000 words a week. *sigh* Cut yourself some slack, Illy!
Finalise the rest of the freebies for the solo site
Done! Now the last thing I need to do is decide on the theme and then get it moving. Once I have my colours sorted and the final layout I can make the site properly visible. I’ve already sent the URL to search engines to get it indexed (as I don’t know how long that will take overall) so this is the last step.
Heh, okay. Not so bad after all. See what I mean about Tricia’s workshop, though? I am writing, just not meeting my own ridiculous expectations of what I should/shouldn’t be able to do. Maybe I should enter a goal for something about that?
This week I want to:
- Work on WTRE: at least 1,000 words per working day (five days)
- Finalise layout and colour scheme for the solo site
Next week I’ll review July and look forward to what I plan to do in August. I’ll also be able to give you a bit of news about some of the new bits and bobs on my lists. *fingers crossed*