I feel somehow duty-bound to record certain details of a party that took place recently amongst certain of my acquaintances; most specifically, an annual bash at which two members of the writer's circle - craig and phil - due to the narrow period between their birthdays, have for some considerable time held joint birthday parties.

It should be said that these are frequently fancy-dress parties, and just so you know, I dressed up as me. Which is what I wear every year. I hate fancy dress. I hate wearing suits. I hate wearing anything I don't want to wear, whether it's a suit, a kilt or a bugs bunny costume. Nothing will ever entice me, ever, to venture into a masquerade at a science fiction convention, nor to witness such an event without rolling into a ball on the floor and alternately howling pitifully and tearing clumps of hair out from my scalp.

Which all brings me to my conversation with Dr Evil.

Dr Evil accompanied a poetess from Edinburgh called Jane - I can't recall Evil's real name - and at one point, when questioned about my blossoming career as a professional author, I discoursed in some fashion about my plans for RWK, various details of which I have discussed in some form or another at other points in this blog. Primarily I spoke with Jane, and about my idea that virtual communities currently represented by games such as Everquest might, in the future, evolve into such powerful entities as to have considerable influence upon the politics of the real world.

Throughout all this, Dr Evil stood, drink in hand, nodding decisively as I touched on various issues. I was pleased to find out the reason he was nodding was that he's the author of a phd thesis on ... virtual communities. And he thought it was a good idea.

So I've got not only a good idea, but an idea that gets phd approval. Nice one.

Now all I need is a good story to go with the good idea ...

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