Techstars: Prologue

I’ve done enough research over the past few weeks to know there is a metric crapton of information on what Techstars is. Illegitimate child of YCombinator, huge international tech accelerator. Blah. Blah. Blah.

And yet there’s very little information on what it actually is – as in what does it really mean to be going on a three month boot camp with some of the best startups in the world? There are a couple of very interesting blogs which help give an idea, but I’m really not sure what to expect. I guess we’ll find out…

So yeah, I joined a startup and in, what… less than five months(?!)1 I’ve managed to hitch a ride to Techstars. I do know one thing: it’s going to be mental!

Last week we mothballed the Norwich office, sent our kit down to our new office space and prepared to say goodbye to our families. For the next three to four months we’re going to be living and working (and working, and working) London.

So what do we know at the moment? Well going to London isn’t a huge issue – we’re living and working in my old stomping ground. I can get the “essential”3 parts of my life into a large suitcase, a gym bag and a rucksack (and I could have done away with the gym bag if I really had to) – really doesn’t seem enough. I know I’ve forgotten something, I just don’t know what yet. Oh, and explaining to a three year old that she won’t see me until next weekend isn’t easy4… especially since there are going to be much longer periods where she doesn’t see me.

Sad that I am to leave my family for so long I need to be pragmatic. I’ve done the Cromer-London weekend commute before and it’s punishing. Chuck in weekend engineering works, long work hours and the mountain of work that I know is coming my way and I can see me burnt out before Christmas – I am, after all, rapidly approaching 40.

So, next stop London5, although you’ll not see this post until a bit later as it’s all a bit hush hush at the moment. By that point I’ll already be in at the deep end 😉

My suitcase, bag and rucksack

Everything I need for three months… and some stuff I don’t. Doesn’t seem enough


1 Has it really been that long? Time really does fly when you’re having fun!

2 _Although spare a thought for poor Chris as he drew the short straw and is sharing an apartment with me. He’s going to need time away and therapy after 3 months of that 🙂

4 Not entirely sure it’s all essential. I’ve got gym kit, clubbing kit, about 100 glowsticks, a few kitchen gadgets, double the number of tshirts I can wear in a week and who knows what else in there. It’s scary how small you can pack your life down to if you need to.

4 “Daddy, it’s nap time, not work time. We say ‘goodnight’ not ‘goodbye’!”

5 Actually, technically, the next stop is Salhouse, I’m just not getting off there; I’ll be changing at Norwich – see what I mean about Chris getting the bum end of the deal?