Four weeks to go to Milford 2013, a residential week-long writers’ conference in North Wales, at Trigonos, which hosts 15 published speculative fiction writers. It’s a week of intense workshopping of works in progress. There are no teachers and students, it’s all peer-to-peer critiquing.
Of course there’s fun, too. Mornings are free for catching up with reading and critiquing (or writing if you’re on a deadline), or you can go and check out the castle at Caernarfon, Mount Snowdon, the private lake shore at Trigonos, or you can just nip to the nearest shop for a few more bottles of wine for the evening meal and post-dinner socialising.
Held annually since 1972 Milford has seen the top names in SF passing through: James Blish, Anne McCaffrey, Brian Aldiss, Charles Stross, Alastair Reynolds, Diana Wynne Jones, John Brunner, Jaine Fenn, Liz Williams, Neil Gaiman and many, many more. You don’t have to be a multi-published author to attend. Just selling one story qualifies you and everyone is equal once you’re there.
I’ve been a Milford regular since 1998 when I only had one published story under my belt. Since then I’ve only missed three years. Milford has taught me so much and made connections that I would never have dreamed possible. I can honestly say that without Milford I wouldn’t be staring a book deal in the face right now. Getting and giving crits is hugely helpful, but there are also the little drops of information about markets and the publishing industry, the friendships, continuing contacts and advice.
Milford 2013 is now full. In 2014 it’s a special year for Milford. Because of Loncon 3 (Worlcon) in August in London, we’re holding 2 Milford weeks. One is to take place the first full week after Worldcon, which means peolpe flying in can do both Worldcon and Milford on the same air ticket with a four dat break between to take the tourist trail. The in September we have a second Milford week to enable those who are working at Worldcon to pull themselves together after all the hectic activity and do the later Milford week.
Below: Crit session in progress