“In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit.”

It’s one of literature’s most famous opening lines. The hobbit Bilbo Baggins is smoking a pipe and minding his own business when Gandalf the wizard arrives, offering adventure.

Bilbo, comfortable in his Bag End home, isn’t keen on anything remotely adventurous. But fate has other ideas. The very next day Bilbo — and without so much as a pocket handkerchief — is off on a great adventure in the company of Gandalf, and 13 dwarves keen to avenge their forefathers against the dragon, Smaug.

With Peter Jackson and his crew about to begin filming, TheOneRing.net is delighted to announce a series of book-based Hobbit chats over coming weekends that will analyse Tolkien’s text chapter-by-chapter.

Join us on Saturday March 19 at 5pm EST in #thehalloffire on our IRC server (irc.theonering.net) where we’ll delve into the first chapter “An Unexpected Party” and discuss the nature of Hobbits and their customs, Bilbo’s near-disastrous tea party and our initial impression of the Dwarves and Gandalf. That gives you plenty of time to find your copy and catch up — so get busy reading!

Time zone conversions

Not sure what time the chat will be where you are? Check this little conversion table out for some help.

5.00pm EST (New York)
4.00pm CST (Chicago)
3.00pm MST (Salt Lake City)
2.00pm PST (Los Angeles)

10.00pm GMT (London)

8.00am (Sunday) Brisbane
9.00am (Sunday) Sydney, Melbourne
11.00am (Sunday) Wellington

Our chats usually last 45 mins to an hour, and are very newbie friendly. Simply drop in and join the conversation!


Chat happens on #thehalloffire on irc.theonering.net – the TORn IRC server. You can connect instantly via our java chat client that works inside your web browser (find it here!) or choose to install a dedicated chat program such as mIRC on your computer.