Advice for first time Edge-Litters!

04 July 2017

Inspired by a recent email conversation, I thought it might be a good moment to offer some insight into what goes on at Edge-Lit for those attending for the first time or indeed debating attending for the first time! One thing that comes up time and time again from people is that Edge-Lit is a compact and friendly event, so ideal for someone who's never been to a convention or anything of its ilk in the past. So here's my top eight list of things to bear in mind for any newcomers to the event – and who knows, maybe even some of our experienced attendees might just find something of use too...

1) START YOUR DAY AT THE REGISTRATION DESK. You won't miss us, just to the right as you come in, and we'll have your name there ready to get you booked in for the day. It's there you'll get your name badge, as well as your goodie bag which contains not only some free books and samplers but also your programme booklet – an invaluable guide to your day.

2) BE SURE TO CHECK OUT THE DEALERS ROOMS. There's a varied and thriving scene of independent authors and publishers out there, and the dealers rooms at these kind of events are a great way to find them! You'll find lots of limited editions, lots of independent releases and generally a lot of superb titles you won't find in a bookshop.

3) KEEP YOUR NAME BADGES WITH YOU ALL DAY. Ideally, you might want to find a spot to wear them, but your name badge will get you into all the sessions throughout the day. If you don't want to pop it on, just keep it to hand for when our 'redshirt' volunteers asks you for it when you head into sessions on the day.

4) FANCY WORKSHOPPING? GET THEIR EARLY! The doors for the event open at 9am, and you might think that's a pretty early start for an event kicking off at 10am. But if you want to sign up for any of our perennially popular workshop sessions, that's one the day and first come first served, so we suggest a nice early arrival to make sure you get onto the sessions you want. 

5) TAKE A LOOK AROUND THE GALLERY. The venue, QUAD, is both a cinema and art gallery, and as we speak the art gallery has a fantastic exhibition on entitled 'Our Friends Electric' exploring robots and AI in the modern world. Well worth a look for any fans of science-fiction attending!

6) DON'T BE SHY! Because Edge-Lit is a more compact convention, there's always a chance to mingle and socialise and if you want to go and say hi to someone, then be sure to do it during the day! Lots of friendships are made at events like this, and if there's a particular writer you'd like to have a chat with them don't be afraid to do so.

One of the most popular parts of Edge-Lit is the raffle, and this year we might just have the very best line-up of prizes as yet. Add to that a live draw that's always great, lively fun and you're onto a winner. Tickets are just £1 a strip and you can get them at the registration desk or one of our redshirts will be round to offer you  a few!

8) IF YOU'RE STUCK, ASK A REDSHIRT! The redshirt volunteers at Edge-Lit are a vital part of what makes the day run, and if you're ever lost, stuck or not sure what to do then just go and find one of them to ask! The registration desk will double as an enquiry desk all day, so you can always head there with any questions you might have.

Last but by no means least, if there's anything you'd like to know before the day, feel free to get in touch on email! I'm happy to be contacted at alexd@derbyquad.co.uk

Alex Davis
Literature Officer, QUAD