We chatted for well over an hour (two rounds each if I remember), and in that time Graham could not have been more generous with his insights of publishing and his route into writing and his career thus far. He pointed out to me every industry professional in the bar I needed to talk to (Just tell them Graham sent you), and every novelist in the room that would do me no harm to read (He’s a very good writer, and him, he’s excellent, you should read him). All the while we talked I kept thinking: I’m talking to Graham Joyce, and Graham Joyce has just bought me a beer… I’d like to say he wore his success lightly, but honestly, I don’t think he even registered it.
The following morning I saw Graham again at breakfast, and not wanting to be the clingy newbie I didn’t go out of my way to make I contact, but he spotted me across the dining hall and came over to say hello. As I was leaving the convention early, I wished him luck for the awards ceremony later that day, as Graham had a novel in the running for an award. “It’s always nice to win an award,” Graham said, “but I’ve won quite a few of them now – it’d be nice to see one of the younger writers take it.”