Friday, 15 November 2013
Brook Cottage Books is absolutely thrilled to have Lorraine Wilson on the blog today. Both Lorraine and I attended the Festival of Romance last weekend. Lorraine has kindly written a post about what it was like to be at such an event for the first time.
The Festival of Romance, a First-timer's Experience.
I was told there's no better or more sympathetic audience than other writers but as I waited for my turn for reading at my very first author event (Coffee and Cake at The Lane) I felt hideously nervous. Some of the audience were writers I greatly admire and I had no doubt they could deconstruct my excerpt and critique it in seconds if they wanted to.
Charlotte Ledger from Harper Impulse had offered to read for me (I have a brain injury) but it didn't make it any easier. She started off by telling everyone I was fabulous which made me want to sink down into the floor. In fact you can see me to her right, hiding behind the pillar! Only when she'd finished reading from my second book 'Secrets of a Chalet Girl' and everyone had listened and laughed in the right places could I breathe out again! I also had to studiously avoid my mother-in-law's eye, worried she'd be shocked by the borderline steaminess of the reading but she coped and said she'd done her teacher training in the Cardiff Docks area so not much could shock her ;-)
Other highlights of the weekend for me were seeing the bags I'd made for my author friends on the Harper Impulse stall in the Romance Fair, meeting new people (sadly not enough, there were lots of people I'd wanted to find and say hello to but my energy ran out) including Sammia Rafique from Avon, Harper Collins. I had a fortifying drink with her, Charlotte Ledger and Katie Sadler from Harper Collins along with my dog Pip and my husband before the Awards dinner.
The awards announcements were another heart-pounding moment but I took a mental step back from the emotion and found myself thinking about how to describe the sensation if I were writing it. Yes, it's incurable - I'm a writer to my core! I was fortunate to be shortlisted for two awards (innovative author in the Industry awards and best eBook for 'Confessions of a Chalet Girl'). I didn't win but lost to fellow Harper Impulse authors so still had something to celebrate. I was also thrilled that Harper Impulse won the award for most innovative publisher and who could resist being swept up in the upbeat mood when publishing contracts were handed out to aspiring authors?
This year was my first experience of the Festival of Romance and I love that it included readers, book bloggers, agents and publishers. It's open to everyone so if you love books too I hope to see you there next year.
'Secrets of a Chalet Girl' is now available from Amazon http://smarturl.it/secretchalet, iTunes, Kobo http://bit.ly/1e0YT9E & Nook http://bit.ly/1dl5cUD and the third in the Chalet Girl series 'Revenge of a Chalet Girl' http://smarturl.it/chaletrevenge is available to pre-order, release date 19th December.
To keep up to date with Chalet Girl Series news checkout my author page on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LorraineWilsonWriter