Post Talk

I've just come back home from Cheltenham. It was great fun, and I'll have a quick run down of some of the best points.

  • The hotel I was put up in was so posh a tiny bag of KP nuts cost £1.75. This is not a complaint.
  • I can find a Wetherspoons pub anywhere. It's a skill.
  • One of the staff in the 'Writer's room' wrote her dissertation on my publisher The Friday Project, including my book in it.
  • Another volunteer who looked after the panel did some work experience for The Friday Project.
  • Both of the above are obviously intelligence people of taste and distinction. Also pretty.
  • All the guests on the panel were lovely, as was the host.
  • Jed Mercurio, as well as being lovely, has given me a lot to think about.
  • Feedback from the audience was apparently good – I'm glad that they enjoyed it.
  • I did my first ever signing – it was *superb*.
  • I still feel like some sort of a fraud. I think that I need to get over myself.
  • I managed to get my favourite book of all time signed by the author ('Microserfs' by Douglas Coupland) and I managed to blabber like a fame struck idiot at the same time.

This is the first time that I've done anything public around 'literature' as opposed to internet/blogging. If they are all as interesting, well thought out, and perfectly organised as this one I'd like to do some more.

I'd also like to thank all the people involved for inviting me – it was great.

Now – back to work at 6:30am tomorrow, and back to writing about ambulance things.

21 thoughts on “Post Talk”

  1. Tom, was great to see you in Cheltenham. The talk was great if woefully short (from an audience perspective at least). I could have listened to the three of you witter on into the late evening.I can confirm that the volunteer who looked after the panel was indeed very pretty (even a man of my persuasion can tell). I also agree that Jed Mercurio was very thoughtful, he came across as a guy who has a lot to give his craft.You came across as very genuine and honest, a man of the street (even if that street is Leyton High Road). You were extremely personable and came across very well.You did seem a little nervous (how much water did you drink??). As for being a fraud, you write very well about what you see and experience every day. I'm at a loss to see how that is not genuine. Yes, get over yourself!! People who paid to buy your bock, paid to see you on stage and then came to get your moniker in it in appreciation. Big up to Tom.Next time you might be on your Casualty wages, then you can afford the peanuts 😉

  2. “I still feel like some sort of a fraud. I think that I need to get over myself.”Yes, you do. :o)

    Specifically, to be more helpful, you need to get over the idea that there are “non-frauds” out there who have somehow surpassed you on a level of integrity, literacy, whatever (none of these should be your sore points, so insert your own) and that having FINALLY attained that point your goodself, you have “ARRIVED!!!!” and may then change your identity from person to, slightly, somehow, just better than the person you were before.

    Seen at its worst, this phenomena comes up when previously self-deprecating teenage musicians become ego-monster rock stars. Seen at its best, well it's you really, but just accept that there are no categories aside from, you do two difficult jobs (EMT & writer) extremely, actually painfully, well, and so deserve all the credit you can get from both.

    And nothing more. Or, less.

    And you still poo in the morning and you will never be either a fraud, or entitled – you're just, you. And that is bloody great.

    (disclaimer – vast background in music industry, talking people who thought they were the new Messiah down, shortly after talking them out of giving away all their money because they felt unworthy. So, FWIW really, and apologies if I've missed the mark, I frequently do….)

  3. (It did feel short)Thanks for the kind words.

    Jed does have a lot of brains and thinking going on in his head, from the little that I spoke to him I got the impression that he is incredibly sharp.

    The water? I was just thirsty – once the introductions were over (which all the guests hated) I wasn't really nervous at all.

    And I'm disappointed – I thought you were going to introduce yourself!

    (And I'm not sure if Casualty wages would stretch that far).

  4. Nice one smoochie,A nice warm glow emanates from that post, (with the exception of the line already highlighted.)

    As for the peanuts, well, Casualty writers can probably buy the odd packet of nuts from time to time, the problem being, they (as with most writers) will always wonder if they are going to be able to generate the cash for the next packet; an insecurity that probably goes with the territory of selling your creativity.

  5. Totally off topic, but I've been reading this blog for ages and ended up needing the help of the ambulance service on Saturday. I was horse riding and fell off breaking my leg and suffering mild concussion at least 1/2 a mile over rough ground to the nearest road.A road crew were sent to me and did take about an hour to arrive which was fine as I wasn't about to die! They were brilliant and quite rightly gave me sinal care just in case as I'd be KO'd and for about 20 mins was very confused not knowing the day year or time! As it was a difficult walk to the ambulance the Police chopper was called and I got a very quick 10 min transfer to the hospital. Everyone was brilliant and very supportive throughout!My only wish is that I'd never watched Trauma. As when they're telling you to take deep breaths on the gas and air in A&E you know they're about to do something thats going to hut! 🙂

  6. I can't believe you came to my beautiful town and went to Wetherspoons!!! You will just have to come back again next festival and do it properly!!I will get you some peanuts from Tesco, they are cheaper!!

  7. Now I know why I couldn't find your event in the brochure. You need to forgive yourself for blabbering; this happens at seminal moments! I was calm and monosylabic while talking with the gentleman himself, then began to act like a stalker waiting around outside… Must be the Cotswold air, or maybe the connection. It was good to talk to you. It took me from standing on the stairs to that third lot of tables to get up the nerve to speak to you. Thank you for speaking back!

  8. Hey, I love talking to people – so the pleasure is mine. the only time you need to be nervous about talking to me is if you have something wrong with you and *I* look worried…

  9. Claire.Wetherspoons are…

    (A) Cheap.


    (B) You know what you are getting.

    (Also (c), I love their Mixed Grills with a pint of Smiths, it's what I treat myself to when I'm feeling like looking after myself).

  10. If only I had known that then I would have asked you out for a drink! Would have been good to spend a little time analysing Doug's performance in relation to his works of fiction… And how we act when faced with objects of esteem…

  11. Knowing what was going on was good for most of it I think as it kept me calm, apart from when I knew they were probably about to do something that was going to hurt!Oh and I really want to thank the crew. Any suggestions? I was thinking at least a card sent to the ambulance station but need to confirm where they came from (I think I know but just want to be sure!)

  12. If you contact the Patient Liasion Service of the service and let them know the date and time they dealt with you they should be able to track down the crew involved.(Heaven knows that they can do it easily enough when someone complains *snark*)

    Then a letter of thanks will bring a little happiness into the crews life.

    (I'm still waiting for my first letter of thanks…)

  13. Well I hope you studied Jed's technique for your blossoming career as a wordy-type.I did introduce myself, in a roundabout way, by mentioning the expensive peanut rations. Sometimes I'm too cryptic for my own good… I asked you how you squared the journey from the streets of Newham to the finest hotel in Cheltenham.

    The kind words are as heartfelt as your blogging. You give, we give back, and pleasure is had by all!

    I'd also like the world to know that Cheltenham can do better than Wetherspoons. Next year we'll show you!

  14. I know Tom honest – we often go there before going to the races for breakfast or as the first port of call on a cheap night out. But promise me you will try something different next time you come?Wanna take a bet on how many packets of peanuts you get given on your next book signing?

  15. I'll definitely do that then.. Although I was still rather dazed I do remember the crew looking rather knackered from their long trek over the moors to get to me. They decided not to bring the gas and air though as it was too heavy, much to my dissapointment as we couldnt risk opiates as they've made me sick in the past. So I went to hospital with very little medication. But they still managed to not make it hurt too much and stabilised the leg quickly with blankets to keep it still!

  16. Normally I don't comment on blogs, but you've an awesome taste in books! Microserfs is my favourite as well.A great blog, by the way.

  17. Bloody hell you took your time. Not many blogs in English what I'm reading on daily bases but defiantly was missing updates in yours 🙂

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