It’s Wednesday night and somehow I’ve gone from being embarrassingly punctual to the late side of fashionable. No one will care particularly – once again I am off to a London tech meetup to, well, meet a whole host of complete strangers – however I am a bit ashamed of the fact that I’ve managed to get lost in the most central part of London less than three blocks away from the bar I’m trying to find. But, I’m a girl so I’m prepared. My A-Z is in my bag. And I am not ashamed to ask for directions from my coworker, Alice, who wrongly assumed I knew where we were going. Being prepared, willing to ask for help and female are traits I will share with those I am about to meet and finally the bar is in sight. Silicon Stilettos, here I come.
Silicon Stilettos, organised by Zuzanna of Huddle.net, is a chance for techie women of London to gather, sip some sponsored drinks (in the case of tonight’s event, the beverages are being provided by Sun Startup Essentials and the few men in attendance are for the most part responsible for the plentiful food and drink so we don’t give them too hard a time), chat about business and technology and meet share ideas.
There are a number of brilliant women in attendance, but one of the entrepreneurs in attendance whose company really caught my attention was Anna of CompletelyNovel. CompletelyNovel is an online platform for writers to publish their stories and readers to find new online reading material. While using the web as a way to share creative writing is nothing new, CompletelyNovel offers ways for writers to manage their fan base and articulate readership to partner publishing houses, basically making a case for their book’s success before the publishing houses take the risk and expense of publishing the story. As CompletelyNovel puts it, “would a band be signed to a record label without fans, record sales and a tour?” Now, authors have the opportunity to prove they will be a success and increase their chances of getting picked up by a publisher. Additionally, readers get the chance to access all sorts of brilliant fiction in one online library for free, and support their favourite authors.
Anna and CompletelyNovel represents just one of the many interesting stories I hear at Silicon Stilettos and anyone who thinks that women are not a driving force in technology would be forced to reevaluate in the presence of the strong, entrepreneurial women I meet tonight. Thank you so much to Zuzanna for organising the event and Sun Startup for sponsoring the night. I look forward to future Silicon Stiletto events.
It also seems fitting that my recap of an evening with this wonderful group of women marks the 200th post here at The Top Floor Flat. I’d like to thank friends and family who have been reading since my fateful flight from JFK to Heathrow. To be in the company of these women is just one small indication of how far I’ve come. Thank you for reading, commenting and being a part of my adventure!