Last weekend I was part of the Publishing Day School at Writers’ Centre Norwich, speaking about online serialisation alongside an excitingly broad mix of traditional, digital and self publishers. Here’s a webinar version of the talk:
About eight years ago I went to Eastercon, my first science fiction convention. It was a great weekend full of fascinating panels, including the likes of Neil Gaiman, Cory Doctorow and China Mieville. As engrossing as the discussions were, there was a narcissistic room in the back of my brain which wanted to be up on the panel, rather than sitting in the audience.
Being part of the Publishing Day School, sitting on a panel alongside other writers, I achieved that goal. It was another critical step along the road of becoming a writer.
When people ask me what I do, I tend to say “I’m a writer”, before elaborating and talking about what I do in the ‘day job’ (digital marketing, incidentally, which is a lot of fun). I’ve only felt qualified to introduce myself like that for the last year-or-two, since I embarked on this experimental path of online serialisation and episodic writing. Curiously, being able to primarily self-identify as a writer also makes me far more comfortable accepting that I spend the majority of my working days in marketing.
A Day of Faces was the first writing project which I finished and published. It’s what made me feel comfortable describing myself as a writer. Having written that story, I was no longer lying to myself or anybody else with that description.
Being paid to talk on a panel alongside other writers and as part of a day including expert publishers from Jonathan Cape and Unbound was really the icing on the cake.
I’d better start thinking about what the next achievement to unlock needs to be.
You can find out what else Writers’ Centre Norwich does for writers over on their website.