Thursday, January 08, 2009

The glamorous life of an author

Current work: revisions to Penhally book
Listening to: Crowded House, Together Alone
Reading: Next on TBR pile

Picture the scene yesterday: one short, scruffy, overweight mum-of-two at her desk, dog snoring gently behind her. Have had busy morning already with school run, polishing rosebowl, and putting Sainsbury’s grocery delivery away/asking lovely driver to sort out fact that they’ve accidentally charged me for eleven punnets of raspberries. (Eleven?? We like raspberries, sure, but there are only four of us. Hmm. Might be that greedy with chocolate, but have banned it from the grocery shop.)

Open file to sort out revisions.

Then the emails start coming in. RNA’s lovely PR officer needs a pic of me for the shortlisting stuff. Hmm. I have two: the one my son took three years ago (when I was a bit thinner and my hair was shorter), or the one of me clutching the Betty Neels Rosebowl (which I had to give back yesterday, sniff). Go for the older one (last year’s pic is unsuitable, in the circumstances) and remind self that I need to lose 5 lbs before Feb 10. (Luckily it usually goes off my face first, and I have the Pandora bracelet and Radley bag to distract people from the spare tyres.)

Email from lovely ed: can you do a blog for IHP? Yep, sure. When? ‘After you give me the revisions tomorrow.’ (OK. Hint taken.)

Email from PR agency. When are you free for interviews? Can you do them over the phone? (Yes, have a loud phone and a hearing aid, can cope fine with phone as long as they don’t have handsfree the other end.)

Email from PR agency (again). Local paper wants you to do a feature – up for it? They’ll talk about your new books and the RNA shortlisting. (Yep, let me know wordcount and deadline.)

Email from PR agency (yet again). Interviews set up. Ditto feature.

Email from lovely ed: next year’s books. We’ll firm that up next week. (But in principle it was a yes. I did not mention the florist or the Venetian glass. Dear ed, if you’re reading this, please don’t worry. Is going to be verrry topical. And none of them are going to be bankers!)

Email from agent: excellent news that we can talk about the shortlisting now. How are the revisions going? (!!!)

Blimey. And that doesn’t include lovely emails from nice people saying congrats (and it would be rude of me not to reply). Or the mad emails I’ve been exchanging with some of my M&B author mates. (Especially one of my fellow shortlisters. Who has issued me a challenge. Lightbulbs are already flickering.)

Call from Dad: have I seen my interview in a local magazine? No-o-o. (He’s keeping it for me.)

Sort emails; add in the scene I was thinking about this morning before all the emails started. Decide am allowed ONE cup of coffee. Get carried away with scene and am nearly late for school run.

Do post office run on way home. Lovely Sue from post office grins, beckons kids over and leafs through local paper. ‘Recognise anyone on this page, do you?’ Groans from kids. ‘Mum, you’re in the paper AGAIN. Hang on, what’s this about helicopters?’ Helicopter parenting. ‘Eh?’ Never mind. Does not mean am taking you on helicopter. Is a Contentious Modern Issue.

While waiting for lasagne to cook (home made, ultra low fat), check Harlequin sites in case need to update PLR/ALCS records (know I need to do this from foreign copies received this week). Discover that seem to be doing what looks like world domination:

And add to that, in the post last week I got my first ever Hebrew edition (Breakfast at Giovanni’s). Talk about thrilling.

And then next month M&B’s website will have Modern Heat’s very first Sheikh (i.e. mine) available (and what a fantastic cover – I think that’s probably my all-time fave cover now).

And of course there’s still the fact that am overexcited about being shortlisted for the RNA Romance Prize (for the third time in four years).

Blimey. Not bad for a short, scruffy, overweight mum-of-two.

The question is: how, just how, am I going to make myself glam enough to live up to this – even if it’s only for one day, next month?

I dunno. So I’m going to avoid the issue. Instead I’m going to vote for eHarlequin as the best online community in the 2008 Weblog Awards. (If you want to vote, too, hop over to - and remember, you can vote once every 24 hours until 12 Jan.)


Amy Andrews said...

HI Kate. Coming in late (here anyway) with my congrats on the RNA shortlisting.
Fabulous news. Cyber champers and chocolate heading your way. Might help with the raspberries :-)

liz fenwick said...

Will it be two years running, I ask myself? Huge congrats!!!


India said...

Are you me? (But with more raspberries and smarter accessories?)

Kate Hardy said...

Amy - many thanks! (And mm, champagne and raspberries. You may just have given me a lightbulb.)

Kate Hardy said...

Liz - thank you! Look forward to seeing you at the do next month :o)

Kate Hardy said...

India - er, no. I'm shorter than you, twice as wide as you (uuuh... can you wear a bodysuit for the shortlisted author pic? You know, like the one Gwyneth Paltrow wore in Shallow Hal?), and - well, I was going to say, one fewer child, but as my son is in a growth phase he probably eats as much as two of your girls, and I have to nag him twice as much, so we're even on the kid front *g*

All I'll say is Venice is probably go...