Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Paperback Writer

It's a couple of days late but it feels like another birthday present: my agent brought the first paperback copy of my novel around to my house today. Here she is sitting on the patio reading it.
She is very pleased with it and I have to say that I'm delighted. I wasn't sure what it would look like when printed but it's better than I could have expected. Bless those lovely Lulu publishing people. 

My agent tells me that the really hard work begins now. I think she means the promoting and selling and stuff but I'm not going to worry about that today. I phoned David and told him it's arrived and he said we'd have to go out for dinner to celebrate. I did protest  - a little - that I'm supposed to be dieting but he pointed out that there's no food in the house and that he thought the chances of me going shopping in my euphoric state were low. 

He's right of course. I have so many people to phone ...

A little later
I called Adam and greeted him by singing Paperback Writer down the phone. There was a long silence at the other end and then he said, 'You all right, Mum?' in a very concerned tone.
I said, 'It's the Beatles.'
'The Beatles?'
'Their song.'
Adam said, 'Do you want to put the phone down and start again, Mum?'

Sunday, 15 April 2012

The best birthday ever!

I have had the best birthday ever! Probably in the history of birthdays!

It began with breakfast in bed. (No, actually it began a bit before that but I'm not telling you about that!) Let's just say that it wasn't an early breakfast in bed. Warm croissants, butter and jam, with a steaming hot mug of tea. Last year David tried to make it special by using a cup and saucer. I soon put him right on that: I need a large mug full of tea to get me going in the morning. 

I tried to protest and only eat one croissant because 'I'm supposed to be on diet,' but David told me I was perfect just as I am. Ahhhh.

Adam stuck his head around the door briefly to say happy birthday and that his dad had just arrived to take him back to university. I started to panic. 'Oh but I haven't checked if you've got everything! Did you remember to pack the clothes still in the airing cupboard? Oh and what about the ones I haven't ironed yet? Can your dad wait a minute while I ...' David put his hands on my shoulders, which by now were halfway out of bed. 
'You're not going anywhere. Adam is quite capable of doing his own packing and even his own ironing if he is that bothered.'
'That's right, Mum,' Adam came across and gave me a big hug. 'I've taken all the clothes I can find and if I've forgotten anything, well, you can always send it to me.'
David frowned at him, and he hurriedly rephrased his sentence, 'Or I can do without. You have a great day, Mum. Relax and enjoy yourself.'

Which is what I've been doing ever since. We took Leidy, David's dog who seems to be spending more time in my house than her own, for a walk by the river and stopped off at the pub for a drink and a packet of crisps. (And a muffin in my case.) (Well, it is my birthday and I am 'perfect as I am'!) We picked up the Observer in the newsagents' and then lolled around for the rest of the afternoon, David reading the paper and me alternately flicking through it for any bits that sounded vaguely celebrity-focussed or gossipy, and napping. 

And now David is in the kitchen cooking my birthday dinner. He won't let me go through the door so I've no idea what he's making but there are some lovely smells wafting out. Every now and again he pops out and checks that I'm okay for drinks and if I'm warm enough or if I'd like the television on. It's like being a goddess.

I could get used to this.

Saturday, 14 April 2012

Pre-birthday nerves

I have been neglecting my blog again! Adam just told me off. 'Honestly, mother,' he said - I could tell I was in trouble when he called me mother - 'books don't just sell themselves you know.'
'No, I know that.'
'So how many have you sold?'
'Um, I don't know.'
'You don't know? Haven't you asked?'
'No. I thought I'd be disappointed if the number wasn't in the thousands or even hundreds.'
Adam sighed. 'It's never going to be in the hundr ...' he corrected himself, 'thousands if you don't publicise it and push it more. And one way of doing that is to blog and network. And use Facebook, and tweet, of course.'
'Of course.' I didn't like to tell him the only tweeting I did was in response to the blackbird that sings from our apple tree.
'So will you?' He looked at me expectantly and it reminded me of when he was eight and convinced we were getting him a snake for his birthday. The way his face dropped when he opened the box containing a Lego jungle set still haunts him whenever I have to choose a present for him. It was my turn to sigh. 'Will I what?'
'Write in your blog?'

I assured him I would. So I am. I'm rather excited as it happens: it's my birthday tomorrow! Adam has to travel back to uni so David's taking us all - Chloe and Greg will be here soon - out for a meal tonight. We're going to La Brasserie. I haven't been there since I went last summer with Pippa and Bev and accidentally stabbed a waiter's hand with my knife and then nearly fainted at the sight of the blood oozing out. 

I hadn't seen any reason to tell David about it so when he suggested La Brasserie I couldn't think of an excuse quickly enough. But it's dark in there so they probably won't recognise me, and, anyway, it was because it was dark that I stuck my knife in his hand rather than in my steak. So it wasn't really my fault. 

So I'm sure it'll be fine.