Lovely Libraries

_1010961With Helen Cadbury and Alfie Crow at Middlesbrough Library (photo by Stephen Morris)

Had a great week with two events at two very different but equally lovely libraries. First up was Hartlepool library which is huge and very well stocked with crime novels. It was great to do an event alongside the brilliant Mari Hannah who makes it all look so easy.

Then last night it was off to the beautiful Central library in Middlesbrough as part of the Literary Festival. It was a great evening chaired by Claire Malcolm from New Writing North, and nice to hear fellow Moth authors Helen Cadbury and Alfie Crow read again. We also had a lot of fun exploring the library afterwards and taking lots of photos in the fantastic surroundings.

Thanks to everyone who came along to the events and asked such good questions. I look forward to seeing you all again.

Am I really that old?

Went to see The Breeders play Last Splash at the Ritz in Manchester last night. Have to admit I felt a bit emotional when they played this song but that might’ve been realising that it was twenty years ago when I listened to this on a walkman at school. How old do I feel! Amazing night though and made me remember why I spent a good portion of my teens wanting to be Kim Deal.

Summer Read

summer readphoto by Angela Melvin

Started the week sitting in a deckchair in a North Tyneside park having my picture taken to launch the council’s Summer Read 2013 which I’m very proud to say Stolen has been chosen for.  You can read about the campaign here and I’ll be at Whitley Bay library on 24th September to talk about the book with readers.

Also had fun at BBC Newcastle on Friday despite having to do media training, the thought of  which filled me with dread. But everyone was so lovely and helpful so it was more than worth it. Same goes for the pitching workshop run by Liv Chapman from New Writing North yesterday.  Plus it was great to meet lots of other writers including the winners of the Northern Writer’s Awards (whose identities I’m not allowed to reveal until after the awards ceremony on Tuesday) and winners and shortlisted writers of the Mslexia Children’s book competition.  I heard so many interesting stories and great pitches – can’t wait to read the finished books. Congratulations to all the winners!

The book has been launched…

guis-launch5

Well the moment I’ve been losing sleep over for the past month or so finally arrived tonight and I had my official book launch at the Guisborough Bookshop.  Despite it only finishing an hour or so ago, a lot of it is a blur already! As you can see from the photo, I was slightly baffled by the whole thing. That said, the reality wasn’t anywhere near as frightening as the anticipation. At one point I think I even started to enjoy myself. Who’d have thought it?

As this is the first of many events time will tell whether I arrive at them more relaxed but I’m looking forward to events with Mari Hannah as well as the other Moth writers later in the month.

A big thanks to everyone who came to the launch. It meant a lot to see so many friendly faces. And a special thanks to Liv from New Writing North for helping so much with everything and calming me down when I start to panic. I don’t know what I’ll do without you.

Now it’s time to relax with old episodes of The Office, a bag of crisps, and a dog taking up all the room on the settee. I sure know how to party!

Newcastle Launch

becka-newcastle-launch7l-r: me, Michael Donovan, Alfie Crow (not sure where Helen Cadbury went!) Thanks to Stephen Morris for the photo

Fantastic launch for Moth Publishing and Alfie Crow in Newcastle last night. Alfie gave a very funny reading from his novel Rant, which I recommend you read if you haven’t already.

I had to speak for about thirty seconds which was fairly terrifying, I have to admit. So there could be vomit at tonight’s launch in Guisborough. Perhaps seats at the back would be a good idea for anyone who’s coming along.

But apart from the public speaking, it was a great night. Lovely to see the other writers again as well as the Moth Publishing team and many other friendly faces – some I’d met before, but mostly strangers. But very friendly strangers!

June I’ll go out. July I’ll catch up on TV.

f moth author helen cadbury with her book TO CATCH A RABBIT

On Thursday night fellow Moth author Michael Donovan had a book launch for his brilliant debut Behind Closed Doors. I wish I’d been able to get there as it looked like everyone had a fantastic time, including Helen Cadbury who joined Michael as he very kindly plugged her book too. Thanks to Odette Rigby for the photo.

Tomorrow will kick off an epic month of events to promote Stolen with the official launch of Moth Publishing at Waterstones, Newcastle. The event will include a reading by Alfie Crow from his novel Rant, and all four Moth writers will be in attendance.

For someone who thought (mistakenly) that writing was a solitary pursuit and whose evenings are usually spent watching TV – frequently re-runs of American sitcoms – all this gallivanting around the north-east is something of a culture shock. I have to admit the thought of my own book launch at Guisborough Bookshop on Tuesday night has kept me awake for the past few nights. But like so many scary things, I’m sure it’ll be less frightening in reality than it is in my imagination (I am a crime writer after all).

After I’ve calmed down after Tuesday’s launch it’s on to York on Wednesday for Helen Cadbury’s launch for To Catch A Rabbit. I’m really looking forward to this because the book is so good. It’ll be great to hear Helen read.

Then I get a few days off before things kick off again with a photo shoot in North Tyneside, some media training at the BBC (more sleepless nights ahead, I’m sure), an event with the lovely Mari Hannah at Hartlepool library on 19th June, and one at Middlesbrough Literary Festival on Friday 21st June with Helen Cadbury and Alfie Crow. Then it’s off to London the week after to mingle with other writers, editors and agents.

There’s plenty more lined up in later months but hopefully I’ll have time to relax a little and catch up on TV watching before Harrogate at the end of July. Oh, and I should probably spend a little time on the second book too!