It’s coming up to that time of year again. Yes, it’s (possibly) my favourite event in the con circuit: the SFX Weekender, which will be held in Camber Sands. I will be there, of course. Why? Well, my write-up from last year might explain:
When first thing in the morning you see China Miéville cooking eggs for Peter Hamilton, you know it’s not going to be normal weekend. I realise that sentence implies something earthy happened the night before, and given China’s remarkable ability to deploy the opening riff of ‘Let’s Get It On’ several times over the weekend, who could blame me for such an interpretation.
In addition to the above, myself, Adrian Tchaikovsky and Julie, Chloe and Amy from Pan Macmillan, were all sharing a bucolic, charming cottage, which was a (hefty) stone’s throw from the beach. There were wooden floorboards, comfy sofas, a huge kitchen, and everything had that retro-chic touch that makes homeware addicts froth.
I feel I should point out that the Gollancz authors were herded into chalets at Pontins (note the review titles “Hell on earth” and “never ever again”). Clearly, the gods did not favour them, and some would blame Simon Spanton for renting such dire accommodation. (If a Gollancz author is reading this, I’d email him with more ostentatious demands in future.)
Let’s be clear: this event rocks. It’s different. It’s not poncy, there’s no pretence; this event possesses the solid spirit of the cons of yesteryear. Good debates, good camaraderie, fans mixing with authors, and dodgy hotdogs. And I’ll be cottaging with the rest of the Tor UK crew. Make sure you get your ticket for a weekend of fun on the south coast. Here’s the guest list, so you can see what you’re missing.
There will be whisky.