I was in two minds about attending Eroticon’s Friday night meet and greet again this year. I don’t know many people and I didn’t much relish being a Billy no mates. Thankfully that didn’t happen. Once again I attended with my very good friend Ina Morata. We are both terrible introverts, and without each other to lean on, I don’t think either of us would have gone.
Sadly, my day leading up to the evening wasn’t great. I’ve taken to the habit of booking the Friday before Eroticon (to prepare) and the Monday after, to wind down and relax. The plan was to meet up with Ina on the Northern Line platform at Tottenham Court Road. Which we did –only I’d had my phone in and out of my pocket so many times whilst waiting, that I lost my Oyster card. Fuck it! I had deliberately topped up my card with forty pounds at the beginning of the month to make sure I could attend without the worry of running out of money and not getting home. Moving the date of Eroticon to a week later than last year did affect my purchasing choices. I stood at the exit gate of Piccadilly tube station, frantically searching for my card, only to realise that it’d gone. Forty quid lighter, I pulled out my spare Oyster card (luckily, I’ve always had two spares for guests). I keep a few pounds on them but nothing more -who could afford to? Not me, that’s for sure. It was enough to exit the station but that was it. I dutifully went to the ticketing machine and parted with another thirty pounds to cover the weekend and Monday. Pissed off but happy to be with my good buddy, we headed off to Waterstones to check out the Erotica section and catch up over a mediocre cup of tea and a delicious banana muffin which the lovely Ina treated me to. Ina Morata, you’re the best.
We both bought a few titles from the ever-dwindling erotica section -but not after spending a good forty-five minutes examining every title, and thoroughly embarrassing a few other shop goers along the way. Own it people!
That’s when things went from annoying to taking the piss. The Oyster card I had just used to exit the station, AND successfully topped up, would not register at the entry gate. Another thirty pounds out of reach. Bugger, bugger, bugger! No choice left but to use contactless and hope my debit card would hold out for the whole weekend. The exact thing I had tried to avoid.
We made our way to the chippy just down the road to the Holiday Inn and it’s Glass Room where the other attendees would be. If you’re in Camden, I can heartily recommend Poppie’s Fish and Chips restaurant. Yum!
The meet and greet went as expected. As I’ve already mentioned, Ina and I don’t know many people, and neither of us really mix that well, but we always feel welcome at Eroticon. It was nice to catch up with Andrew from Kinkcraft, Zak Jane Kier, the lovely Rose Monroe and not forgetting our good friend Anna Skye.
Anyone who lives in the UK will know just how crap we are at dealing with snow and I had been expecting a little trouble with the tube trains. I hadn’t expected the whole of the Metropolitan line to be down for planned engineering works. At least I have to option of an alternative route, but it did mean that I had to drive part way an I couldn’t have a drink at the Saturday night social.
Unfortunately, there were a few overlaps on the presentations that I wanted to see. I’d wanted to see Victoria Blisse, Miss Eve E, Emmeline Peaches and Dr Meg-John Barker, but instead, I went for the subjects that should be following:
- Remittance Girl – Taboo. What can I say here but WOW!
- Kayla Lords – How to make money from your blog without losing your soul. I love listening to Kayla. Her relaxed style is awesome.
- Neil Brown – Essential legal tips for sec writers and bloggers. An absolute must for any erotica writer. I missed last year’s lawyer talk, so this one just had to be done.
- Annabelle Knight – The Erotica Effect. I was a little disappointed here. I don’t know if it was the aircon going full blast so that I could barely hear –despite being at the front, or that Annabelle wasn’t particularly well prepared. I just didn’t get much from this choice.
- Anna Sky – Self Editing tips and Tricks. My spelling is atrocious. My grammar even worse. Another must see.
KinkCraft Workshop. I thoroughly enjoyed last year, but because the session I’d chosen was so busy, I didn’t get to finish my crop. I took it back with me this year (I’d forgotten how to finish it), and the lovely Pixie finished it off for me while I made a flogger.
- Fetish.com – Getting it Up! How to raise your writing visibility on Google. This session was one of the most useful so far as blogging is concerned. The knowledge that I took away from this will be well used. Mark my words.
- Michael Knight – Tech for Blog Success. I’ve learned sooo much from this guy.
- Remittance Girl – Love you Longer: Writing longer Erotic Fiction. What can I say about Remittance Girl without geeking out? I read the homework that was set. Mind blown!
What did I bring away? I knew from the line up of speakers that this year would be very different. Where Eroticon 2017 had a definite creative feel (I never did publish last years post. Maybe I will yet), Eroticon 2018 was, for me at least, more of a business -the nuts and bolts behind writing erotica affair. Much of that was in the choices I’d chosen. Whilst I haven’t been writing much in the last twelve months, whether through illness or sheer laziness, I have been thinking more about the logistics behind my writing. This was very much reflected in my choices. Not necessarily through choice, but necessity.
I’m still finding my feet. Deciding what writing I want to do (if any) and what direction I want to go in. After all, erotica is only a fraction of what interests me. I am certain of one thing -all I can write, right now is short stories and the ones I do write are getting darker. This also influenced my speaker choices.
When the speaker list was announced, there really was only one choice for first and last lectures. The wonderful Remittance Girl.
Remittance Girl’s first presentation on Taboo was entertaining, inciteful and thought-provoking. Her last lecture on writing for longer was truly the highlight of this year’s Eroticon experience. Had she been my English teacher at school, I would have taken an entirely different career path.