From Andrew Stephenson's Archive and Dave Langford's Checkpoint
Sun 8 Oct 1978 - Sat 14 Oct 1978
Brunner, John: "Six Guesses, One Sure Thing", 2000ww
MILFORD (UK): (Dave Langford, literary mobster, reports) "The 1978 Milford (UK) Writers' Conference rocked the foundations of the universe in a series of spasms from the 8th-15th of October. Members included some exotic foreigners -- Charlotte Franke from Germany, Patrice Duvic (Leroy Kettle look-alike, imagine the horror of it) & Marianne Leconte from France, Duncan Lunan from the barbaric Pictish provinces -- and enough boring old Britons to justify starting a new sentence. These were: John Brunner, Ken Bulmer, Pamela Bulmer ("Kathryn Buckley"), Richard Cowper, Dav Garnett, Jim Goddard, Rob Holdstock* (whose submission included exotic characters such as "Rian Burgess"), Garry Kilworth* (next year's Chairman), Bobbie Lamming* ("Robin Douglas"), Dave Langford* (me), Bob Parkinson, Chris Priest, Dave Redd (still secret master of Haverfordwest), and Andrew Stephenson*. Asterisks indicate wretched elitist members of the "Pieria Mob", the mere mention of which is sufficient to turn Ritchie Smith's stomach (no mean feat). Now the greatest force in literature since R.L.Fanthorpe, the Mob totally controls the '79 Milford committee... But I digress.
The savage criticisms and learned discussions all took place in the cheap and friendly Compton Hotel, Milford-on-Sea; feared tensions resulting from the hugeness of one or two (well, one) of the above Names somehow failed to materialize. Manuscripts were torn to pieces and flung in the face of the author, but in the most amiable fashion; virtually the only bit of exciting scandal was the Great Fire-Alarm Hoax which proved to be Ken Bulmer and Ken's pipe committing abominations near a smoke-detector. A micro-party at the weekend brought along half a dozen publishers' representatives. All these people, rather than hang about the writers' necks offering huge advances, preferred to play pool, darts, or drunk..." (DL)
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