I guess over the last few months an insidious and influential group has slowly been showing its hand. You may not have been aware of them, at first. They are an organisation who were cloaked in shadow. However, you may have met some of them, maybe at an author event, maybe passed them in the street. They have guided civilisation from the earliest days, raised kings and toppled princes, manipulated the stock market and contributed to the success of numerous creative artists. They have agents everywhere. Well, mainly in the UK. Actually, mainly in Manchester really with a couple elsewhere. To be honest, not all that many even in Manchester… but, so great are these agents they don’t need many to fulfil their schemes.
The name of this epic organisation? Why, it is none other than the Tea Society.
And if you are at this point thinking ‘Who?’ then that is testament to our ability to so totally blend into the background.
The origins of the Tea Society go back a number of years when a handful of writers who lived in Manchester started having sort of not very regular meetings to talk about writing. The name was a joke that rose out of the fact that we could not think of a name and all we seemed to do at the meetings was drink tea and in the end it sort of stuck.
Later, after some discussions around a shared trade table at a steampunk market, we came to the conclusion that it was really difficult sharing a table as we tended to do and maintaining a solid identity for customers to recognise. So, Elizabeth Morgan arranged for there to be a banner and Rachel Bostwick (Queen of trailers and other graphic design goodness) was hired to give us some brand identity with our official logo.
The banner debuted at the Yorkshire Cosplay con earlier this year and was also seen briefly at the World Book Night event at the Fab Café. It will next emerge this weekend at the Literally Literary event at Leeds Central Library and then at the MancsterCon in Salford on August 29th.
So, now that we are out in the open, you may be able to guess some of our members… they include R.A Smith, Ninfa Hayes, Miriam Khan and of course myself. But there are others such as Pat Keheller, Erica Hayes and Alex Campbell (whose book is out soon, you should totally check it out).
If you see any of us at an event, especially if we have the banner up, feel free to come over and have a chat about books in general or our books in particular (and maybe even buy some). I am also currently pondering a special deal where if you promise to do some publicity – take some leaflets to be delivered to local businesses, tweet or share on Facebook, or otherwise spread the word – you may qualify for a special limited edition Tea Society badge. I’ll get out more details of this once I work them out properly.
Hope to see you all at an event soon!