….or at least that’s how it’s felt for quite a while now - well, since that e.mail from Choc Lit to say they were offering me a contract. It seems a long time, and yet no time at all until today - official book launch day.
So, the book was written - I knew there would be edits but they were rose-tinted somewhere in the far reaches of my mind. Those who’d been there before told me doing edits would be a learning curve…..think Himalayas for me then, rather than curve. But I went up one side and came down the other and I survived.
Book cover designs were drawn up and appeared on my screen - six of them. Which one did I like best? Which one was WHSmith - who have a tie-in - going to like best? For me it was like being asked to choose between my children - how could I possibly say which I liked best? They were all miracles to me. But eventually the wonderful cover I now have was decided upon. A few more jerky moves under my limbo bar.
Then I got the e.mail saying TO TURN FULL CIRCLE was going to print on Monday (or it might have been Tuesday or …) and I was limbo-ing a little further under that bar. But not there yet. I still didn’t have a copy in my eager little mitts. I was then told that it would be going out to book reviewers and bloggers and the media. I could safely make a few more limbo moves, then?
People began to ask me what my book was about. What does a writer say? Give the plot away so there’s no need for anyone to buy your darling? In the end, I came up with one word - survival. Because it is survival - both for my heroine, Emma Le Goff, and for me with the old cloth ears. You’d never believe how many times I have to remind myself to write about sound …:)
My book was beginning to feel real the more I talked about it - or was asked to. Then came the actual launch date - today! 7th June 2012 - and I raced off with indecent haste to my local bookshop to book in a ‘Launch Evening’ as Matthew Clarke and his wife, Sarah, who own and run The Torbay Bookshop here in Paignton like to style them. Between Luke at Choc Lit, Matthew Clarke and myself, the wheels started turning for the publicity about my book.
I began to blog - another steep learning curve. This is a woman who when she started work for Lloyds Bank way back then, there were hand-written ledgers for Deposit and Savings accounts - yes, really. I began to get e.mails and comments from people all over the globe which has been lovely - keep them coming ladies and gents. Each time I saw a picture of my book cover, or of me, up there on the web the reality of holding my baby in my arms got a little closer.
When TO TURN FULL CIRCLE was issued on Kindle it was like seeing those ultrascan baby photos for me……you know it’s going to happen because there’s the evidence, but I still wanted to hold it. My lovely friend, Chrissie Vincent, was - I think - the first to download my book and she excitedly got someone to take her holding her Kindle with my book cover on it and sent it to me the same day. People began to write reviews on Amazon for me and I had to stop myself clicking on - oh, at least a dozen times a day, or more - to read them all again and to see if any had been added.
My feet were well out the other side of the limbo bar now…..a few more jerks and I’d be there. Jerks, did I say? It is chucking it down with rain here and the forecast is for more of the same with knobs on for the rest of the day. There may - may! - be a tiny window without rain around six o’ clock when all my friends and family have promised to pitch up at the bookshop.
Now, I’m in good company having my launch at The Torbay Bookshop. Many big names have been there before me - Kate Mosse for one, and Katie Fforde has popped in and left signed copies….I could go on. So, too, has Francesco da Mosto trodden the path from the door to the signing table at The Torbay Bookshop. So tonight I will follow in his footsteps and I make no apologies for adding his photo to this blog - he sold shedloads and I hope I do, too. And besides, he makes my heart flutter quite deliciously…..:)
Wish me luck - if you’re into prayers then perhaps you’d be so kind as to say a few that this rain stops.
At a later date - possibly quite a bit later as there will be some celebrations, rain or no rain - I will let you all know how it went.
And thank you Lyn for making my dream come true - love you loads.