A couple of weeks ago, I shared a blog post celebrating five years as a published author and I’m being a bit greedy and sharing another one because it’s also a special anniversary today – 3rd June 2020. As it happens, this should actually be my anniversary for five years as a published writer because my first book – a novella released on 23rd May 2015 – was not originally part of the plan.
3rd June 2015 was the publication day of my very first full-length novel, Searching for Steven, now re-edited and re-packaged as New Beginnings at Seaside Blooms.
This was such a momentous occasion that I held a launch party for friends and family in my hometown of Scarborough. I was so excited about it but it didn’t quite go to plan…
A cock-up at the printer meant I had no paperbacks which made me cry. A lot. A book launch with no books? Hmm.
The day itself was very hot and muggy and the function room that should have been fine at that time of year was unbearably melting. My hair was plastered to my head and I had no choice but to expose my arms as the lacy shrug I’d bought to go with my outfit made me too hot.
My sister in law made an amazing cake and I completely forgot to cut it and hand it out. I promise it wasn’t a deliberate ploy to keep it all to myself! Although it might have been a bonus that I did have lots of cake to eat afterwards.
My husband was on photography duty but got so tied up speaking to friends and family that barely any photos got taken so I have very few pictures from the event. I had to put my dress back on the follow day and pose for some photos in the garden.
I did my best to circulate round the room but the hours flew by and I didn’t get to speak to half the guests which made me feel awful and, even five years on, I still feel guilty about it. Mind you, I still feel guilty about guests I didn’t have a chance to speak to at my wedding and that was nearly fifteen years ago! This is something I might need to work on. As the song says, let it go!
As a result of circulating, I was too late for the buffet and didn’t get anything more than a mini sausage roll and a few crisps. Soooo hungry.
I made a speech and forgot what I planned to say including forgetting to thank my SIL for the amazing cake. My daughter (eight at the time) got overwhelmed by it all and burst into tears mid-speech which didn’t help with my recall!
So it definitely didn’t go to plan. But it was still wonderful because it was a once-in-a-lifetime moment. After all, I will never have another debut novel.
I’m so grateful to everyone who travelled to Scarborough to share my special day with me, to those who placed orders for books, and to my publisher at the time who was so gutted for me about the books cock-up that they sent me a teddy bear in the post. She knew how to cheer me up! They also got the printer to cover the postage of sending my books out to everyone after they finally turned up.
Earlier this year, I’d briefly wondered whether I might have another launch party to celebrate the release of Finding Love at Hedgehog Hollow – the start of a new series – and five years as a published writer. Then a little virus started circulating and quashed any further thoughts of that. I will have a special celebration this weekend, though, as I mark my last ever HR assignment and deal with my final student query then hang up my tutor hat to become a full-time author.
It’s been five years since my first novel was published but eighteen since I had the idea for it and seventeen since I started writing it. Good things come to those who wait and, my goodness, that’s been a lot of years of waiting, Happy anniversary, me! Cheers!
Have a great week.