I first went to MIX in July 2013. It was the second MIX and the first conference I had ever attended. When I arrived, I stood at the bottom of Corsham Court’s long driveway and looked up at one of the grandest houses I had ever seen; an Elizabethan mansion that houses Bath Spa University’s graduate courses. The grounds had been designed generations ago by Capability Brown and there were peacocks wandering across the lawn.
The conference – which is all about creative writing and technology – was special. At that time I was an independent researcher and gave a paper on collaborative forms of digital authorship. I had never presented at a conference before and didn’t really know the conventions of what was expected. Everyone was supportive; they asked questions about my research, they prompted me to think about my subject in new ways and I met people that I still know today.
Over the years, I have kept coming back to MIX for conversations about digital writing, for the keynotes and workshops, for insights from writers who have worked in the field for decades and from new researchers. Held every two years, this year is the fifth MIX conference. I have now been to dozens of conferences but MIX is still special to me. This year, the conference is returning to Corsham Court, to the peacocks and one of the grandest houses I have ever seen; where I now work.
Returning to Corsham Court means that the conference will be an intimate, single strand version, curated for a smaller audience. We want to bring an international audience to a beautiful corner of Wiltshire for the time to think and the space to talk about the intersections between writing and technology.
This year, I’m producing the conference, along with Professor Kate Pullinger, Lucy English and Dr Helen Goodman. We are focusing on experiential storytelling, including immersive technologies and new forms of publishing, from transmedia and poetry film to virtual reality to AI in storytelling. We are proud to an announce a packed programme of six panels and our speakers; Guy Gadney, CEO of To Play For and Charisma.ai, a storytelling platform powered by artificial intelligence; Dr Donna Hancox, transmedia and digital storytelling scholar at Queensland Institute of Technology and editor of The Writing Platform; Thomas Zandegiocomo, Artistic Director Zebra Poetry Film Festival, Berlin; and writer Nikesh Shukla.
We think we have curated a MIX that will appeal to new scholars, writers and practitioners attending their first conference and those who have given keynotes all over the world.
We hope you’ll book your ticket and join us. There will be plenty to talk about.