Simon Morden and the collapsing camping stool

April 13, 2012

Great to hear that Simon Morden’s Samuil Petrovitch trilogy has won the Philip K Dick award.

As you might guess, it’s science fiction – not something we often run into here at Downie Towers.  But I’m enormously grateful to Simon.  Over the years I’ve sat on damp sofas, wet grass, and a collapsing camping stool to listen to him speak at the Greenbelt Festival. At the worst venue, everyone stood in several inches of mud. At the best, we were all crammed into an Inflatable Church.

No matter what the surroundings, it was always worth being there. He’s one of those writers who takes time to encourage his fellow-scribes, and he always has something thoughtful to say. Here’s my favourite – the words that encouraged me to think maybe a novice like me could dare to write about Roman Britain:

‘Never mind write what you know. Write what you love.’

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  1. I’m playing by both ideas: I’m writing what I know in order to support my writing what I love.

    In reality, I’d love to be a gentleman farmer, but we play the cards we are dealt, and hope we can bluff those around us into believing we have a winning hand. :)

  2. Best of luck with both kinds of wordsmithing,Tim. Hopefully there will be times when they overlap.

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