Special Spaces, by Jim Anderson

The Milford Science Fiction Writers Conference met earlier this year in September. Over the years, I’ve attended several, all of them at Trigonos, our current home, and I’ve been thinking about some of the spaces there. 


There are spaces in my life to which I attach particular meaning, arising from the interactions I have with others in those spaces. There is of course home and family, warm fires burning on cold evenings, celebrations and sad moments. 

But there are others. I teach, and though I teach in different rooms each semester, and different rooms indeed over the course of a week, I feel almost a presence when I walk into the room. I am there for a particular purpose, to teach, to be the guide for others who have decided to explore ground that I’ve been mapping for years. 

In my practice of aikido, the dojo has a particular resonance, again because it is a space in which we gather to undertake that activity. This applies to my home dojo where I started 25 years ago, and the dojos at summer school, and even visiting a dojo in a city I’m visiting for the first time.

There are rooms at Trigonos that have that resonance. There is the dining room, where we gather for breakfast, lunch and dinner, morning biscuits and cake o’clock in the afternoons. There are few things as entertaining as working through the subtle details of a zombie apocalypse over hard boiled eggs and home made bread.

Dining room

There is the library, where we gather in the evenings, where conversations can take random fractal walks through the brains of writers. One of the highlights from the most recent Milford was a surprisingly long digression on unexpected noises that caused more laughter than might have been expected.

Milford 2022 – in the library at Trigonos

And there is the main meeting room, where we sit and work through the stories, expressing our views on the pieces the others have submitted, letting the flow of ideas, characters, plots and settings wash over us. And I am constantly amazed at the breadth of views that some fixed set of words can provoke.

Main meeting room

So roll on Milford. I’m already looking forward to the next time I drive down that twisty road under the looming piles of slate slag, turn into the gravel lot, and walk through the front door, the gate into these special spaces.


About Jacey Bedford

Jacey Bedford maintains this blog. She is a writer of science fiction and fantasy (www.jaceybedford.co.uk), the secretary of Milford SF Writers (www.milfordSF.co.uk), a singer (www.artisan-harmony.com) and a music agent booking UK tours and concerts for folk performers (www.jacey-bedford.com).
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3 Responses to Special Spaces, by Jim Anderson

  1. Dave says:

    Milford. A special place indeed.
    Untill next time.

    Space Jesus!


  2. Great post. Very evocative! Can’t wait to get back to Trigonos next year.


  3. Jacey Bedford says:

    It will be lovely to see you there again.


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