Sunday, 25 May 2014

The Inaugural Meeting of the Liverpool Literary Society

The Liverpool Literary Society is Born
It wasn’t 1603. I wasn’t Sir Walter Raleigh, ambling up to the landlord of The Mermaid Tavern (on the corner of Bread Street and Friday Street), asking if a bunch of writers could use the back room for a gathering (rumour). But I reckon it had the same feel.
The proprietor of Lanes Privateer Inn on Bristol Avenue, Liverpool, was delighted at the idea of a meet-up of literati in her inn (also home to Snug Harbour Books).  And so the word went out. Then the responses came in.
On Wednesday 21 May at 7 pm, ten like-minded, but genre-diverse souls sat around the table. There was a frisson in the air. I told them, very swiftly I might add, about Sir Walter and how he’d (supposedly) gathered Will Shakespeare, John Donne, Ben Jonson and more in much a similar manner. And the frisson fair sparkled.
Introductions were made and it soon became apparent that the diversity in every sense was what would make this particular bunch exciting. From a biographer, to a well published author, to novelists, a poet, editors, translators, a song writer, young adult and children’s authors, to a creative non fictionist - and then in strolled a smiling visiting writer from Toronto.
As you can imagine, time ran out in this inaugural agenda-less event. Ideas for the future floated and swirled - gloriously - and so it looks like The Liverpool Literary Society will have a future and that it will meet at the same place at the same time on the 3rd Wednesday of each month. Just like The Friday Street Club at the Mermaid Tavern in 1603 where Will and co chose the first Friday of the month - lest they forgot.
It didn't need saying that the Liverpool Literary Society would be about sharing and support in all things booky. It was, however, felt that it would not need to be a closed group - but an “All Welcome” event once a month. Where visitors to the area could drop in, see what we are up to on this part of the globe, share a little of their literary world maybe. The society could even provide the occasional satellite possibility for WFNS events.
For those members wishing for a more focussed gathering to help review manuscripts prior to submission - stuff like that - sub sessions could be set up as required. There was talk of inviting guest speakers too, authors, publishers et al, later in the year. Yes, there was a lot to get excited about.

Of all those who responded, around 50% already had commitments on that date and weren't able to attend the kick-off gathering, but they wished to be kept informed. It is hoped that folks from other areas of the industry will feel it is a place for them too e.g. illustrators, agents, printers, publishers, journalists, book sellers and yes, readers too.          

The facebook page 
and the website/blog will carry information and useful, but ad hoc, writerly tidbits.

Here’s hoping I don’t finish up in the tower like poor old Sir Walter after this,

S.B. Borgersen