July 14th, 2015

Edge-Lit 4 - A report from a Happy Camper

The annual Edge-Lit event, a one-day literary festival held in Derby, gets better and better each year. This year’s, held on 11th July, was the best yet. More big name authors, more readers and writers, more indie presses, more panels – more of everything. There was such a great buzz about the day, yet everything was fun and relaxed. And what a great chance to catch up with friends. I bumped into people I hadn’t see for ages, took part in a panel about History in Fantasy - thank you Alex for putting me on a panel NOT ABOUT VAMPIRES! - watched a number of interesting panels/ interviews, and met Joanne Harris of Chocolat fame, and had a truly fantastic time at the Knightwatch launch party helping to promote the NICE DAY FOR A PICNIC horror anthology in which I have a story, along with Theresa Derwin, Alex Davis and many more Knightwatch authors and editors. Several of us did a short reading, and there was wine and cake. Zombie Brain Cake!

Well done Alex Davis for organising a packed, inspiring and generally awesome day.

To quote fellow attendee Kevin Redfern: “It’s been an absolutely barnstorming weekend. EDGE-LIT 4 came and went like an emotional hurricane - for those of us trying to forge a trail into the world of writing, this event is a pit stop of mental nourishment, a shot of pure inspiration in the veins of imagination. You are surrounded by people you admire, people whose books you've read for years or whose screen work has been with you since your early years, and by those who are starting out right now, whose earliest works show hope and adventure and wonder and magic and brilliance. You meet old friends, you meet Facebook friends in real life, you meet your heroes, you meet people you've never met in any other way but just get on with like a house on fire. It’s one of the most encouraging, inclusive, welcoming and inspiring environments you can possibly find yourself in as an author. In a job/hobby that is mainly solitary, conventions such as Edge-Lit are a vital lifeline, a buoy you cling to as a chance to get out of your pit, to crawl toward the sunlight and meet your fellow scribes, also blinking into the sun (and usually trying to live through an epic hangover). I lead a fairly social life, but Edge-Lit is more filled with people I love than practically anywhere else or anything else I do all year. This year, I got my first published short story in an anthology launched by the magnificent Knightwatch Press - a huge honour, especially sharing the stage with such talented authors. The other readings were so great, we bought both anthos, and will be after more at Sledge-Lit!!”

I couldn’t have put it better!