The Nearly Show

Book the Nearly Show now for your venue or festival



Nearlyologist Chris Ifso sits at a table in your venue working at his laptop. Beside him is a display which explains that he is gathering Nearlies for the website. Nearlies are short accounts of things we’ve nearly done in our lives which say something about who we really are. Leaflets around the venue explain the project. Chris chats to those who approach him and encourages them to make a ‘Nearly book’ from a sheet of A4 which he photographs and they can take away. A Nearly Grinder will be on hand to turn negative Nearlies to dust and so dispel them. Nearlies gathered will be published on All participants are invited to an informal performance.


At this event Chris & The Ifso perform the Nearly Manifesto, reads short extracts from his novel of Nearlyology, sing Nearly Songs which appear in the digital book, and read Nearlies gathered, inviting some audience members to tell their own stories if they wish.


To help your users explore how their self image is influenced by the things they’ve nearly done.

To entertain your users and engage them in creative workshops about Nearlyology.

To introduce them to the novel What Didn’t Quite and the ideas it explores.


Chris Ifso is the pen name of digital writer Dr Chris Meade who has been awarded a PhD on Nearlywriting Nearlyology from Bath Spa University. He’s already run Nearly Events at Waterstones for the Bath Literary Festival, Jewish Book Week at Kings Place, Agony Art at Chisenhale Studios E3, as a pop-up in an empty Bristol shop with artists’ collective Alldaybreakfast, at the Earl Haig pub in Crouch End, Hornsey Library and the Mix Conference at Bath Spa University. The events have been enjoyable and revealing, gently therapeutic and funny. They’ve attracted lots of positive attention. He’s also recorded an album of Nearly Songs with the Ifso Band. The novel was devised as a transmedia experience involving text, sound, reader interaction and live events.

Chris is a writer of fiction, comedy, songs and scripts. He has been published by Penguin Books, performed at the Edinburgh Fringe, written a digital novella In Search of Lost Tim (described by the Independent on Sunday as “a jeu d’esprit and, just possibly, the future of fiction”), and was commissioned to write a sitcom which was – nearly – produced for BBC 1. He has been Director of the Poetry Society, Booktrust and if:book UK, a think and do tank exploring the future of the book. Recently he was a member of Academy Inegales, working with musicians and writers on collaborative and improvised performances. He has an M.A. in Creative Writing & New Media and is an experienced tutor of creative writing. Chris can run customized workshops on Nearly Writing, Nearly Music etc. for any setting.


A place for Chris to sit and display his stuff, including a selection of books linked to the theme;  the ability to sell ‘I Nearly’ badges and copies of the Nearly Manifesto etc., space for an informal performance involving a maximum of three performers. We supply mics, amps, instruments etc.


Contact Costs negotiable. The Nearly Project is supported by if:book uk, charitable company exploring the future of the book in the digital age.

Read more about the project at

“Nearlyologists call on all people to share freely and openly one with another

who they really and nearly are…  Far more things nearly happen than happen.

The universe is held together by the dust of `human kind’s nearlyincidence.” – Nearly Manifesto