Last weekend saw my third visit to The Quad for its legendary Edge-Sledge series of literary events.
Happily, the experience did not succumb to the trilogy curse of weaker third instalments. Instead, this may have been my best Edge-Lit yet.
I know the drill by now: astonishing access to bestselling authors and award-winners, a packed programme of insightful workshops, tonnes of new friendships to be made along the way, and a well-stocked bar within easy reach.
Here are the 19 things I learnt at Edge-Lit 2019.
1. Zen Cho taught me that sketching out my typical day in 30-minute instalments is a great way to identify available slots to write. After that, there can be no excuses!
2. Authors like Nando’s too.
3. Alex Reeve taught me that crime novels should have three overlapping levels: the surface story, the hidden story, and the detective’s story.
4. I need to read The Watchers by Neil Spring.
5. I need to read The Picnic at Hanging Rock.
6. In Japan, they tell ghost stories in the summer to invite a welcome shiver during the warmer months.
7. Stephen Volk’s Dick Turpin television show is going to be awesome.
8. There is a book called 2k to 10k by Rachel Aaron which will help me write faster.
9. Adrian Tchaikovsky explained that terrain is an oft-forgotten element of any literary battle.
10. I definitely, definitely don’t need to arrive at 8am to bag workshop places.
11. Christopher Golden taught me everythingthere is to know about publishing contracts.
12. Stephen Volk taught me everythingthere is to know about pitching a TV series.
13. Donald Trump toilet paper is a thing.
14. Alex Reeve said, “Character and plot are the same thing.”
15. Christopher Golden said, “I don’t like to write about human monsters because real life is scary enough.”
16. Neil Spring said, “It would only have to happen once…” on the topic of ghosts. One confirmed sighting would mean that anything supernatural is possible.
17. The Flowerpot is slightly further than I remember.
18. The Skybus is a much cheaper ride home than an Uber.
19. The next Edge-Lit… is going to be an entire weekend!
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