Thanks to the Bluewater branch of Waterstones for putting my book right at the entrance to the store.
Here’s a flavour of my book launch which took place in St Mary’s Church, Lower Higham on the 5th April. Thanks to Ralph Connolly for the photos.
My book in the window of my local Waterstones in Chatham.
You’ve been writing that book for just about ever and lo and behold, against all the odds, you have found yourself a publisher. Your book is going to be out there on the shelves and the launch has been planned like a military operation. The nerves are kicking in and if one more person tells you to, “just enjoy it.” you’re going to scream. Follow my ten point plan to make sure you survive your big night and make it one you remember for all the right reasons.
- Firm up the details of your launch with the venue, publishers and your agent.
- Raise an army of helpers to lay out glasses, put up road signage and greet guests.
- Visit the venue with a friend to practice your speech and readings. Make sure your guests can hear you from everywhere in the room
- Buy a dress, get a haircut, do what it takes to feel confident that you look your best on the night.
- Designate a driver so you can enjoy your own hospitality and a photographer so you can remember the event if you’ve enjoyed the hospitality a little too much.
- Go Pilates, meditate, wander in the flowers, drink cider by the river. Get into your zone in whatever way does it for you. ( I did all four)
- Try to get some early nights and no doubt fail as everyone suddenly wants to spend time with you.
- Bathe in the good wishes of friends (they really are excited for you.)
- Get sage advice, a pep talk and a hug from a friend you love and trust to calm your nerves.
- Go out, smile and yes, enjoy it. After all, you have earned it.
I know that at this moment I am meant to be acting all sober and professional and writer-like. But look, it’s my book, looking like a book and that is just hilarious and cracking and kinda amazing.
Take a look at the new film to promote my forthcoming book, On the Marshes produced by Luke Gardener.
Whitstable Literary Festival
Sunday 14th May 11am-12.00pm
Whitstable Castle, Tower Hill, Whitstable CT5 2BW
This literary festival by the sea features both well known and lesser known local writers and aims to celebrate Kent’s cultural heritage.
I will be talking about my new book, On the Marshes and will be in conversation with Ros Coward, Guardian journalist and former director of Greenpeace.