30 September 2009

I should be so lucky...

I wish that over the years, I had kept a diary of all the fabulous people I have met and events I have attended through the course of my relatively new career in the book world (trust me, things were never this interesting in housing).

Some things stick out anyway – lunches with Jenny Colgan and Louise Candlish, getting to say “good morning Mr President” to Bill Clinton, afternoon tea’s with Marian Keyes and Lisa Jewell, a meal at the chef’s table at Rhodes 24 with Gary Rhodes, a “thing” in a private room at Charlotte Street Hotel with Bernadette Strachan, being insulted by Janet Street Porter, launch party’s with Sophie Kinsella, Mike Gayle and other members of The Board, giggling with Jojo Moyes and Veronica Henry at The Romantic Novelist Award ceremony, attending the British Book Awards, meeting and talking to Jackie Collins, dinner at San Lorenzo with Gianluca Vialli, rubbing my left breast up against Gordon Ramsay…

But there are a multitude of other really quite fabulous things that have kind of merged into one another – private rooms at Sketch, river boat parties, launches at The Ivy, meals at Roka and Mint Leaf and Moro and Kew Grill, preview screenings of The Devil Wears Prada and Bridget Jones, parties at St Martins Lane Hotel… and one day when I am older, greyer and with even less control over my bladder I will look back and say, how lucky was I!

29 September 2009

Caddle Up

I am growing ever fonder of Colette Caddle. She has grown into one of my favourite current authors, and I am hopeful that her latest title to hit the UK in March next year, The Secrets We Keep, will secure her place in the hearts and minds of every other like-minded book reader.

I’ve just closed the pages of the trade edition (which we published in July for the export market) and I have a wee tear in my eye and flutter in my soul.

Colette is already a bestselling author in Ireland, but the UK has yet to jump on her with the same gusto they have with some other, more famous, Irish writers - but I have every faith that if the readers pick up her books, they will love her every bit as much as they do Cecelia Ahern or Marian Keyes….

New Work has done a cracking job on her new brand image….see….

and all it will take is one the big supermarkets to order 25k, get them on the shelves and start selling them and we will have a winner…

I have a couple of the trade editions going spare for anyone who fancies reading this latest story?
So another week has slipped through the fingers, and we are in a same old same old sticky wicket situation. One moment of note to report. My second date (well, not date in the true sense of the word) with Akram Khan was no less spectacular than the first. Bahok is just the most amazingly fantastic piece of dance I think I have ever seen. It’s not ballet, it’s this - “bahok brings together 8 dancers from diverse cultures, traditions and dance backgrounds: Chinese, Korean, Indian, South-African and Spanish. As such they resemble a present day version of the tale of Babel, speaking different languages both with their bodies and tongues. They meet in one of this globalised world’s transit zones and try to communicate, to share ‘the things they carry with them’: their experiences, their memories of their original homes, the dreams and aspirations that made them move. They are carriers. They are bahok.” and it’s fucking brilliant.

20 September 2009

Another weekend, another birthday fandango. Kensington Place offers a delicious three course lunch menu and great cocktails; my chesnut and mushroom pasta with a sage foam, butternut squash and gorgonzola risotto and a pudding of peanut butter parfait, chocolate ganache and salted caramel icecream was one of the best meals I have ever eaten... happy birthday Lady Lynch, you rock!!

18 September 2009

That has got to be the shortest Summer Reading campaign in the history of reading…what a bunch of arse.

I am ever hopeful of this so called bbq autumn we keep being promised to help me in my goal of finishing at least one of the huge piles of books that are cluttering up the lounge, before a whole other bunch of other good stuff starts being published, and the books literally start taking over the world again.

Anyway. Latest to be slapped down on the finished pile is lad lit author extraordinaire Mike Gayle, who found the back of the net with his last one The Life and Soul of the Party which tells of the lives and loves of a group of thirty something mates. There is lots of angst, some infidelity, a few kids, a bunch of drinking and dancing, lots of parties, some travelling, one or two pregnancies, and a terrible death.

One thing I’ve always loved about Mike’s fiction is that the people he creates are always very normal; they don’t have fancy lives, they aren’t part of the international jet-set crew, they aren’t singers, models or movie stars, they don’t drip with diamonds, or wear designer gear from head to toe. And I love them for those reasons alone.

14 September 2009


Yesterday I went to see a workshop performance of Silk - a brand new musical drama with music and lyrics by Matthew Strachan and the script by my friend (and his wife) Bernie.

As before, when I saw their last musical Next Door’s Baby I was completely blown away and can not think of a better way to spend a Sunday afternoon.

The blurb on the website goes like this: Ruth Ellis and Albert Pierrepoint had only one, infamous meeting. But in Silk the two enjoy revealing conversations over tea and biscuits at a macabre parlour party, entertained by a louche variety bill including Albert’s predecessors, his family, Ruth’s friends and her lovers. Finally, as the clock strikes nine, it’s time for Ruth to leave. Albert is left alone with his ghosts. A psychological musical drama, Silk is teeming with half forgotten historical figures grateful for the chance to unburden themselves through a rambunctious score.

My blurb would go something like this: Bernie and Matthew are so incredibly talented and fabulous; it just takes my breath away. If I had a smidgen of their creative juice I would be smug and probably hateful. Silk has a brilliantly funny script, just the right touch of sick and wrong in places given the subject matter, and the score is worthy of a sell out season on any West End musical stage. If I was a producer person I would be beating my way to their door to snap up the opportunity of bringing this work of genius to a theatre…

7 September 2009

Ticket to Rye....

Our long weekend by the seaside ended with a bump this afternoon, and four loads of laundry waiting for us back home...

3 September 2009

Poke Off

I’ve only gone and done it.

I’ve done what I swore I wouldn’t do.

I’ve reinstated my facebook page…

I give it three days before I get poked off with it again and disable myself....