So for the past couple of weeks I guess I've lost that bloggin' feeling. I have been a touch preoccupied with trying to find a new house to live in, while the price of a house in Glasgow is sailing far out of my view and waving bye-bye as it goes.

The redraft of Against Gravity is about two-thirds through, with what feel like substantial changes. I've noticed an online page about Novacon, the UK November convention which tends to focus on writing much more than it does on other media, and played with the idea of going for the weekend (depending on who else is going). I do need a break - and the Eastercon earlier this year was the nearest thing I've had to an actual holiday in some time. I'm iffy about conventions, because I've frequently found that the majority of people I speak to at them are the same people I speak to anyway up here in Glasgow, but I was thinking the other day about how much things have changed. Ten to fifteen years ago, I went fairly regularly to conventions up this way, because I liked to hear talks by authors I admired. The whole 'fan' side of it never interested me.

Ten to fifteen years ago, you got people like Harlan Ellison and John Brunner at sf conventions, giants of the field. You don't get them anymore - at least the ones who are still alive - or so it seems to me anyway. Yes, there's Banks, and others like him, but it's the ones who got you when you were still too young to wriggle away that draw your attention, and an awful lot of them are now either dead or too old to travel.

So it's a curious thing, to find myself in a position where, having finally achieved - at least for a while - the goal of becoming a paid sf novelist, I find my enthusiasm for conventions waning. I can remember a time when the idea of being at a convention, not merely as a reader - but as a writer, one with real books either on the shelves or soon to be on them - deeply enticing. Now I'm there, it seems surprisingly easy to forget this.

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