Wednesday, 25 July 2012

HARROGATE... NOT A TOSSER IN SIGHT (Let's get positive 'n' have some fun!)

Seems I also have Graham's free bottle... or had... hic! 
...well, apart from me! ;-)

It was my first Harrogate Crime Writing Festival, and I watched and listened in disbelief, from close up in that fateful room, as those gobsmacking events unfolded...

... Waking up to see Crimesquad's Graham Smith's cheek-wobbling face, as he ground his teeth and spluttered like an asthmatic wild boar, was summat to behold I'll tell yer! Horrific? You couldn't make this shit up. (Soz, mate, you know I love you.)

As for the festival itself at the Old Swan, I saw and met lots of very approachable, like-minded, book-loving folk having a ball.  It was tremendous to catch up with friends old and new, and mingle with some of my literary heroes.  Gotta mention Simon Kernick here, who I was thrilled to have a good natter with, and he even remembered my name two days later.  Plus, Stuart Neville signing 'Collusion' for me, as we share the same agent (but, being on the rewrite of novel attempt 2, unlike Stuart, I much prefer the 'scenic route' to success!).

I've had my own feelings from the start on the controversial ebook panel, but have still read other reports with great interest, the one I agree with most being here.  However, I look at things somewhat more simplistically...

I believed early on that it was a publicity stunt, and still do.  I like and admire both Stephen Leather and Mark Billingham, and will continue to buy their books.  I had the pleasure of shaking hands with both of them and briefly chewed the fat (not on their hands, that would be grotesque and a tad bad-mannered).  Also, I will continue to buy both ebooks and, dare I say, 'real' books.  It will all settle down over the coming years, readers will read and writers will write, and physical books will survive.

So cheer the f**k up everyone! (Told you it was simplistic. Now, where's that fence cos I need a sit down.)

Matt Hilton, Moi, Nick Q, Graham, Luca V & Mr Malone.
I didn't see any cliques, apart from our mob (see photo, with thanks to photographer extraordinaire, Russel McLean), but anyone was welcome to join us, and they did.  To a man, they are top blokes and I'm proud to call them my friends.

There are too many people to mention, but everyone I spoke with was cool, supportive and good fun.  Our mob apart, (who know how I feel about them), special mentions must go to Howard Linskey, for having me in stitches and making Saturday night a cracker.  And, Kevin Wignall, who I just managed to catch right at the end (God only knows who threw him out of that top floor window, maybe the butler?), and who sent me a nice message of advice on Facebook to continue our dialogue. Says a lot about the man, that does.

Anyway, it was bloody brill. Enjoy the snapshots...

Laters,
Col
That aforementioned escaped wild boar! Think I might owe you a pint, mate!
It was nice to see that Jedward made it, eh, Luca? ;-)
Fungi..."Did I mention I saw Aguero's goal live, Howard?"
Good times with: some bloke, Scott Turner, Jo Evans & Zoe Sharp.
With Graham and his magic pass! 
Ps. Names keeping popping into me head of more people I chitchatted with, but I'll be here all night, so apologies if I missed you out. You're all splendid folk! ;-)

Pps. I see many a tosser in my job and I didn't see any at Harrogate.

UPDATE 29/07/12- The fallout from Harrogate has astounded me. As I'm sure you're all aware, it's all over the net, but there are too many links and discussions to put here.  If you've a spare few weeks, you can easily find and read them. Alas, I haven't, so I'll be writing...

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

Fun review. I'm glad you had fun and met some talented people.

Cheers,
Jeanette

Col Bury said...

Thanks, Jeanette.

It was definitely fun, a real eye-opener. I've a long way to go yet.

Best,
Col
x

Graham Smith said...

At least the book I fell asleep reading was crime fiction. (apologies to the author but I was a tad drunk after skinning the dog as a hangover cure)

I cureently have fro sale on eBay a picture of Col Bury reading 50 Shades of Grey accompanied by the soundtrack of his snory revenge.

Great weekend mate. Must do it again next year.

Col Bury said...

There's no smilie symbol for a guffaw!

From the tyops, I take it you've had a few, mate...?

And, yes, defo re' next year, but I wouldn't touch that book with a fookin bargepole!

David Barber said...

Would love to have been there, buddy. Looks (and sounds) like you had a ball. Next year is a must!

Sean Patrick Reardon said...

As always, a great recap, and love the pics. You do a top job with this sort of thing.

Col Bury said...

Dave, you gotta come next year, mate.
It's a real eye-opener, informative and a good laugh.

Sean, cheers, bud. Glad you liked it.

Regards,
Col

Lily Childs said...

So glad you all had a great time, controversy aside. Wish I could have been there too - maybe next year.

Fab mob pics!

Col Bury said...

He-he, Lil. Just emailed you. Spooky... well, a bit spooky. ;-)

Would be great if you could make it next year.

Train Writer said...

Hey Col,

What a wild escape. I like the fact our friends across the puddle wave a pint to all! Cheers

Col Bury said...

Hey, Michael.

Good to hear from you, bud. Cheers!

Anonymous said...

Hey bud..u gud? Jus browsin..whilst workin..tapt in..how to kill a tosser,ya know wen u get them moments of....psychpathic tendencies..especially wen yr paintin!! On yr own..im sure u think ov shit wen yr paintin!!! NO!!! F*k me!! Cat..bag..gone!! Ow u doin..seen ya on fb in profiles..cant b arsd takin time lookin at stuff..100mph........take care pal..c u sn.opefully..sponie..