Been there, read it — dunnit!

Sunday last was SWET’s  first fiction reading event, Sounds and Effects, much trumpeted on this blog.

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Doing the Undies thing at Sounds and Effects, Planet Cafe. Photo, kind thanks Colin Doyle, aka Nagaijin.

Many thanks to George and Rebecca and Richard for putting on that event. Hopefully, this will be the first of many more.

For the very few people on the planet who were not actually at Sunday’s event (even the extraordinary abilities of the organisers couldn’t physically fit seven billion people in the venue) I have posted the text I read.

This was a chapter of the current work in peristalsis King of the Undies World. The event on Sunday also featured a lively discussion, assorted beverages, and a large and imposing bull, sculpted out of junk, but I am unable to post these on the blog.

These events are very welcome. Much of the time writers feel they are working in a vacuum: you are locked in your head on your own, and your head is probably locked in a room on its own and you really have no idea how people might receive what you are writing. Such is the sense of being locked away you might start writing in a completely made up language without even noticing. Events such as Sounds and Effects help reassure that you are still on planet Earth. Sitting up there with everyone staring at you while you read stuff you have composed in the madness of your solitude is nerve wracking, but you get a sense of the reaction of an audience to your work. (People almost never laugh, gasp or scream when you expect them to, and do so reliably when you didn’t intend laughing, gasping or screaming.)

More important, these events are a chance for like-minded people, to get together, share thoughts and have a good chat.

Finally a word for the venue, Planet Café. This is a comfortable and attractive combination of café and art space, attached to a crafts shop. Well worth stopping in to browse while you fortify yourself. It’s just west of Motomachi station in Kobe, under the railway tracks and in that fascinating warren of arts and crafts places, shops for record nerds (vinyl, everyone!), and cool eateries and drinkeries.

Apropos to nothing, but another reason to visit Kobe: At the moment the area is hosting the Kobe Biennale  where just about any unused space is turned into an impromptu art gallery or installation, effectively turning Kobe into one giant art gallery.

Thanks to Colin Doyle for the photo. More photos and other stuff at the Sounds and Effects Facebook page.

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About chrispagefiction

Author of the novels Sanctioned, Weed, King of the Undies World, and The Underpants Tree; also the story collection Un-Tall Tales; editor, freelance writer and all that stuff. At heart he is a London person, but the rest of his body is a long-term exile in Osaka, Japan.
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