The conference started at 8:30am on the 10th July, and went right through to 10pm on 12th of July. It was held at Queen Mary's University, Mile End, in East London. Delegates used student accommodation on the campus. It's a great way for the university to earn money while its students are on their long summer vacation.
Jan Jones, Roger Sanderson, Jenny Barden and their RNA team plan these events years in advance, so nothing could be done when a strike of London Underground (subway) workers was called last week for 9th July. That was the day when most people would be arriving at the campus. Worse still, mainline trains running from the west of the country into London would be cancelled, too. People like me who live right out in the shires wouldn't have a hope of getting to the university, as the total lack of parking space there meant bringing a car was right out of the question.
I went up to London a day early to avoid the problems, but lots of people didn't have that option. They battled in on foot on the day, hired cabs, and tried to find a space in one of our traditional red double-decker buses. British people are famously good at queueing, but things got heated and the police had to be brought in to calm things down. You couldn't make it up. We English are usually so peaceful!
|The (Prince) Regent's Canal, On Campus|
Saturday Evening's Gala dinner gave the 300 delegates the chance to dress up and glitter beneath the spectacular vault of books contained in the university's grand Octagon library.
|A Touch Of Hogwarts At Queen Mary's|
What do you think are the best things about belonging to a creative writing group?
When she isn't cooking, gardening or beekeeping, Christina Hollis writes contemporary fiction starring complex men and independent women. Her books have been translated into more than a dozen languages, and she’s sold more than two million books worldwide. You can catch up with her at http://www.christinahollis.blogspot.com, on Twitter, Facebook, and see a full list of her published books on her website. Her current release, Her Royal Risk, is published by The Wild Rose Press and is available at getBook.at/Her_Royal_Risk and http://bit.ly/1MpGd3D