My move back to the UK has meant that I am actively seeking out new connections with regard to my writing world. This week my public self has flown around the county with a huge smile upon her face.
I was invited to give my first library talk in Kesgrave, a small village near the town of Ipswich in Suffolk, UK. Suzan Collins (author of Chatty Cat), and I were give a warm welcome by the librarian, Emma. Then she made me cry. She pointed out that the library were now stocking my books (and Suzan’s, however Suzan had already experienced the first emotion of seeing her books in library), and my jaw dropped in amazement. I am an Indie – a self-published author. No publisher, just me doing everything to get my books read, and to be recognised as such was overwhelming.
The reading group, and attendees of the event were interactive and friendly, and gave me confidence. I went home on cloud nine. I garbled out my excitement, grabbed a coffee and turned out into the wet night to head off for an evening of crime.
Frinton Literary Festival was something I came across this week, and rang in hope of grabbing a ticket to hear internationally-renowned, best-selling author Sophie Hannah talk about her latest in her Culver Valley crime series,
The Telling Error. She also told us a little about the new Poirot mystery,
The Monogram Murders, which she published in September with the approval of the Agatha Christie estate.
Also, talking about his latest was, Fergus McNeill, author of three DI Harland crime thrillers.
They were both so interesting and inspiring. It was also great to listen to folk outside of my genre.
I was met by a lovely lady from Caxton Books, Frinton, and she introduced me to two local chaps who write crime. The evening was not lonely, nor boring. It finished my day with me fired up and raring to attend my next event.
The following day I jumped into the car and headed off to Caxton Books, to meet my writing heroine, Barbara Erskine. I was like a child going to the funfair, my heart pounded with excitement.
I have been a fan of the historical author, Barbara Erskine for years. Her descriptive writing of the area we once both lived is delightful. Her book, Hiding From the Light, was written in a town where I once lived, and I could hear my feet echo through the streets, as she described. She has the art of transporting the reader into her world with only a few well chosen words. It has been my dream to be able to write that way but over the years I have learned it is the author’s voice that shines through, and you cannot emulate another’s personality. I will be content to know I have met her, chatted with her, and have her ask where my books can be found. Yes, she genuinely expressed interest! I was honoured, taken aback, and once over the shock, produced the gift I had hidden in my bag. At first I wasn’t going to give it to her but after her kindness, I handed it over. To my delight she asked if it was signed, she accepted the gift with the graciousness of the lady she is, and it was truly a wonderful experience. One I will always treasure.
I purchased her new book, The Darkest Hour, for my mother’s birthday gift, and she is thrilled as Barbara signed it to her with a birthday message.
Once home it was back to the general chores but I didn’t mind, I knew I had risen another rung up the ladder within the writing world. My books are on library list, and thanks to one of the writers I met on Thursday I have applied for lending royalty rights. Something I didn’t know about.
There you have it, my week of writing adventures, memories I will draw upon when I am up to my neck in washing!