Alt.Fiction and After

Given that Alt.Fiction is a one day convention, it is amazing just how much can be packed in.  Obviously the team from Writing East Midlands had worked really hard to put together an interesting and exciting programme, complemented by the staff at QUAD, who managed that difficult line between friendly and organised.  It’s a really good venue for something like a convention and having the cinema layout seating made attending the various panels and discussions both interesting and relaxing.

At the signing I was next to Steven Erikson of Malazan fame who turns out to be a really nice guy and we chatted about odd things which inspired stories.  I did the Angry Robot Reading with Ian Whates, Gav Thorpe and Andy Remic to a select audience, which went well, and I went to the reading by Mike Carey of his short story “Face” which appeared in Subterranean Tales of Dark Fantasy – a really interesting and fascinating piece about a society where one ethnic group has a custom of removing girls’ faces, so that they are blank until they are married – throwing all sorts of contrasts and comparisons with our own customs and conceits.  That is definitely a recommended read.

The only down-side was that there simply wasn’t enough time.  I did manage to spend some time catching up with friends but there were people I only saw briefly and would have loved to spend more time with – the downside of a packed programme, I suppose.  Apologies to those I missed in what proved to be a hectic but fun day.

They do say you should leave them wanting more and so Alt.Fiction is definitely in my diary for next year.

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