So today’s the day the blog party starts to celebrate my 25th Mills and Boon. It doesn’t seem possible that I’ve reached this milestone, because it feels more like yesterday that I had the launch party for my first book. (Is it really a little less than five years ago?) That book, A Baby of Her Own, started being written at my 6-week-old daughter’s hospital bedside, was accepted on her first birthday and published on her second, and Ottakar’s hosted a party for me with balloons and flowers and… considering what a stormy night it was and how many trains were cancelled due to bad weather, I’m surprised so many people made it to the party!
Obviously, an achievement like this isn’t made alone. I have a good support network – my husband has always championed my writing and takes over the lion’s share of parenting when I’m on the last couple of days of a deadline, my aunt and uncle have also championed me (to the point of taking a day off and coming to the Savoy with me when I was shortlisted for the RNA Romance Prize last year), my children do things that spark off lightbulbs (hence the purple hair in my third book and the ‘blutterflies’ in my twenty-fourth), and I have some very, very good friends.
So now I’m having a cyberparty to celebrate my 25th book. A global cyberparty because, over the last few years, I’ve made friends with a lot of authors who live thousands of miles away from me. I believe that all people are nice until proven otherwise, and I’m lucky in that my cyberfriends have turned out to be just as nice in real life as they are on the internet. (And kind. Even though some of them are at conferences/travelling/on screaming deadlines, they’ve still found time to do giveaways for my blog party.) Some of them I haven’t met yet, but we’re working on it… and in the meantime they’re doing guest blogs here.
Breakfast at Giovanni’s is my fifth Modern Extra. So just as an icebreaker (until this afternoon, UK time, when I’ve finished my book and have time to put up the contribution from my first guest!), I’m giving away a signed copy of Giovanni. To enter the draw, simply tell me the title of my first Modern Extra. (Clue: my backlist is on my website, and the MXs are in chronological order rather than grouped by setting.) And as it appears traditional for cat-owning authors to get their cat to choose… this is who will be picking mine in two days’ time!