Sunday, 9 March 2008

Novel Racers Meet?

So, look, if you haven’t heard, I’m coming to the UK for 11 days at the end of April. (Wooo hooooooo I’m a touch excited about it.)

Last year I came/went home for a week to do some family paperwork and it coincided with Caroline’s launch for In Search of Adam. It was most exciting to be able to tell my Bangkok friends, casually, ‘Oh, my friend is having a book launch … and, well I’m going.’ It was considerably more exciting than saying I had to go home for family paperwork.

The lovely Leigh left a comment on a post at mine, saying “What will you be doing? Where will you be going? Are you available for socialising?”

So I thought: “Oh, good question. I’m going with no purpose, other than we have the airmiles, and I feel the need to see the folks.” “To Kent, to stay with the folks; to Manchester to see the best friends.” And “Well, yes, I am.”

So then I wondered if there was any chance of arranging some sort of Novel Racer meet some where.

It always feels a bit awkward whenever this is raised, given that we’re world wide (that’s also a wonderful and inclusive thing for which I am enormously grateful.) There are always problems deciding where we should meet (London is so not the middle of every where) but if it is London, then it starts to exclude folk… from further afield because of financial issues and time commitments.

I guess it depends on the inclination of people. I know that nowhere is ideal to meet, but I do know that I’d love to meet in reality any of the Novel Racers that would also like to arrange something. So I leave it to you to say yay or nay. Leave a comment, or send an email.

JJx

PS 22 April to 4/5 May are the dates.

34 comments:

B.E. Sanderson said...

Don't feel awkward, JJ. If a bunch of you can meet. go for it. I think it's great that so many of the racers are in close proximity to each other (or will be when you go on your vacation). Heck, I'm way out here in the middle of nowhere. Chances are, even if you held a get-together in the US, I wouldn't be able to come (unless it was in Denver, and what're the chances of that). If you have a meet, I'll be with you all in spirit. =o)

Flowerpot said...

Would love to meet up JJ but a) Cornwall's quite a long way from London and b) my sister in law is over from the States in that time. HOpe it works though!

A. Writer said...

I think it's a great idea! I'm not sure if I'll manage being all the way up in Bonnie Dundee but I'll give it a go.

London probably is a bit too far away for me but somewhere in the middle of England would be fine for me...

SpiralSkies said...

I'd definitely up for it - would love to meet up again and getting a group of us together would be terrific...

Debs said...

I would love to meet but am in london from 11th to 13 April which is way too early. Maybe next time.

Rowan Coleman said...

its a good idea JJ and if I am can and the location is right then I'll try and come. Maybe we should try and organise a kind of gathering anyway...a racer's conference???

Leigh said...

As long as it's an evening thing, count me in.

Cal said...

What a great idea JJ. London's great for me but I'm prepared to meet somewhere more central if it helps. Where are we all based? Leigh's on the south coast too, A.Writer's in Dundee, Spiral & Rowan - where are you?

Maybe we could meet in Manchester?

L-Plate Author said...

I could make Manchester?

Caroline said...

I can make Manchester :)

Actually I can travel - let me know. Anything but May 3/4 for me, as I'm at a festival (unless you're in Hexham).

Would be lovely to meet some more racers.

x

JJ said...

Oooh, exciting. So the first weekend 26/27 April or the Fri or Mon next to it would be good for me. And Manchester? That suits me.
Cathy expressed interest in an email - she might be able to come...

What does Rowan mean by a 'Conference'?

Jjx

JJ said...

Spiral is near me in Kent/Sussex border, I think.

Lucy Diamond said...

Oooh I'd be up for that. I'm in Bath so could do London, Midlands, Manchester, wherever. Let's do it!!

Lane said...

What a great idea. I can't commit to any dates at the moment but might know nearer the time.

A. Writer said...

The Weekend of 26/27 April and surrounding dates are fine with me. I've got to book time off work 4 weeks in advance but it SHOULD be okay.

Manchester is also okay with me. I don't drive so it'll have to be the train or coach for me but that's fine. It's a journey I've done before although I've never actually stopped in Manchester so I'll probably get lost! lol!

It's all very exciting!

Helen said...

I agree - very exciting and would love to meet. I believe Manchester would be easyish for me to get to. If we do that lets make the meeting place relatively near the train station or something so getting lost possibilities are limited!

Lazy Perfectionista said...

I live right in the centre of Manchester, so it certainly gets my vote! And I'd be willing to do any logistical stuff beforehand if necessary...

Cathy said...

Very much doubt I'd be able to do Manchester, JJ, but let me know what you arrange and if I can, I will!

Juliette M said...

Manchester is fab for me as I work there... (at the moment)

Count me in JJ :)

Leigh said...

Manchester? Ouch!

I have telephoned my sister and begged, grovelled, and promised a million child-care points in return, but I have won Sunday the 27th April as a child-free day in Manchester.

Is that any good for any one else?

Kate said...

I'm in Kent, so London is great for me. But my (Aussie) folks are over from the USA (such an international family! Hehehe) so I prob cant get away and I'm also flat broke, so Manchester is way out of the question. Oh well.

Will be there in spirit and I expect a full report with photos, accompanying novel and any other notes/diagrams etc. Ha.

JJ said...

I'll leave this til tomorrow and I'll come back in the morning to summarise. Then i'll check out anyone we've not heard from in the UK.

JJx

NoviceNovelist said...

That sounds like fun! I'm in East Sussex so could do Kent or london but probably not Manchester if that is where the majority are able to get to - maybe next time!

Cal said...

Or maybe you could do two meet ups JJ? One in Landan for the southerners and one in Manchester for the northernners? Just a thought!

Cal said...

Also, what time of day would we meet? It would take me a while to get up to Manchester from Brighton (if I'm still here and not in London then) and back so if it was an evening do it might involve staying overnight in a hotel. Ummm...hmmm..sounding expensive now and I need all the money I've got to pay the massively-over-priced-removal men.

Two meets! One in London one in Manchester. But then again it would be lovely to meet EVERYONE. Oh I don't know!

KeVin K. said...

Nowhere near North Carolina, then?

L-Plate Author said...

Kevin, now that would be a great meet up!

A. Writer said...

I'll pull out of the meet.

Me being so far North is causing problems. This way all you Southern/Midlands based NRs can meet somewhere more central to you all.

Wherever we met would have meant an over night stay for me. Even Manchester was pulling on my purse strings - I really doubt I could make the meet if it was held any further south.

I'm disappointed as I would have loved to meet you all but I'll hopefully be there for the next meet.

Clare said...

Are you lot accepting new members? Because I'm about to start writing my third novel (having just heard my 2nd has been sold to a German publisher, hooray!), and my plan is to write 7,500 words per week, starting next week, with a first draft completed by the beginning of July, which is when my 2nd baby (a real one, wot is right now kicking the inside of my stomach) is due to be born.

Anyway, can I be a racer? Can I? Please? If so, what do I have to do to join?

Zinnia Cyclamen said...

Alas and alack, I can't come for two reasons: one is the anonymity problem, and the other is that I'm officiating at a friend's baby's naming ceremony that day. But do have a great time, everyone, and please please blog about it all with photos and gossip and everything! I'll be with you in spirit.

KeVin K. said...

Y'know, if we're going to do this based on the location, I recommend we all drop in on Wordtryst. I've never been to Trinidad, but from what I hear -- and see posted on her blog -- she's got the best home turf of the lot. Little late for this year, but let's plan on all meeting there in '09.

Rowan Coleman said...

HI guys, I'm definitely coming, London easy for me, but will make it to Manchester too, and Kevin is right Trinidad sounds tempting. By a conference, I meant maybe we should try to meet up once a year in different location so everyone can come at some point

Clare said...

By the way, I run another online group for writers (BloggersWithBookDeals), and we have a similar situation re global membership and arranging meets. Whenevr we want to arrange a meet, I do a poll, giving members four or five options for venue, and another one to decide date and time. Then people can vote, and those who are interested in / available for meet-up are the ones most likely to vote, therefore the ones whose opinions count. Once a decision is made this way, we stick to it. There are various free polling tools available online I believe (sorry I don't have any links to hand).

In our case, London always wins for us, because the majority of our members live in the UK, and it is easier to get to London than it is to anywhere else (plus a large proportion of our members live near or in London), but your membership might have a different bias.

Obviously people will always end up being excluded - there's no way round this. If one member lives on a remote island in the South Pacific, chances are they won't easily be able to join in meets. C'est la vie. All you can do is attempt to include as many people as possible.

We have discussed having meets in more exotic locations, because we have members in all sorts of exciting places, but I would recommend that you start with something easy and achievable. Chances are it'll be hard to find enough people who are available at the same time AND can afford the time and money for a foreign trip, so it's better to get to know each other first with a few lowest-common-denominator meets before attempting something more ambitious.

Just my two-pen'th, like!

wordtryst said...

Ooh, Kevin, what an exciting thought! You're all welcome! And the following year we can do the Carolinas, maybe. In dogwood season, please. (Plus, I've always wanted to visit those Gullah islands...)

The world is our oyster. Denver! Bangkok! Dubai! Scotland! Well, maybe not practical. Thank heavens for - ze blog!

Hope the UK meet comes off next month. I'll be there in spirit.