Friday, 22 June 2012

Who are my fellow combatants?

Until just now, I felt like part of a secret society. A secret society at which I'm going to have to fight and be stroppy and possibly even crabbit.

Some months ago I was flattered to be asked to be one of 50 authors from around the world to make up the Edinburgh Writers' Conference. (I don't mean do their make-up, silly...) Why do I need to be stroppy and fighty and everything? Well, because the conference is designed to mirror the writers' conference in Edinburgh 50 years ago, in 1962, when authors such as Norman Mailer and Muriel Spark debated cultural issues and apparently some of the speakers "nearly came to blows". I'm pretty sure this is why I've been invited.

But who else has? The identity of the 50 authors was a secret so I couldn't talk about myself it till yesterday, when the Edinburgh International Book Festival programme was launched. I thought we might learn then.

Well, apparently there was a press release in my goody bag at the launch, but there wasn't in mine. So, a quick plea on Twitter elicited this pic from @robaroundbooks and now, if I peer really hard, I can see the names.

Thank goodness, because otherwise it would have been like a blind-fold wrestling match. I like to know who I have to be crabbit with, even if I don't hit anyone.

Tonight I'm in Dumfries and Galloway, as I'm speaking at a conference tomorrow for writers/aspiring/self-published, all about social media, blogging etcetcetcetc. A long drive and lots of time for thinking about my current novel - in which I have come to a horrible complete standstill because I have NO IDEA what happens next. This is the worst case of mid-book crisis I have ever had. :(

I'm telling you, if I haven't cracked it by the time the Edbookfest happens, I will be highly likely to hit someone. Whoever they are.


  1. Now, now...there is nothing to panic about. Spike is reading the ms you left behind. (He sent me a hair-mail from the Crabbit Hutch.) You can talk to him when you get back but, should you read this first, I am instructed to inform you that his advice is to go and enjoy yourself at the Edbookfest first and then think about whether he can help with the ms. (Sounds good to me. :-) )

    1. Thank you, Cat. He actually may have to make an appearance in the book, perhaps under a pseudonym.

  2. Congratulations on being chosen as a 'delegate' at the Edinburgh Book Festival, Nicola. This is a great honour, yes, but also a world stage opportunity to be as Crabitt as possible - if only to insure that in another 50 years they are still talking about the ‘Crabitt Blows’. Yup, this is not to be missed. I’ll be sure to bring my tin hat and body armour.

  3. Congrats and good luck with the mid novel crisis. Perhaps if you ignore it it will go away?


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