Sunday, August 26, 2012

50th party blog guest - Milly Johnson

I first met Milly Johnson about five years ago, when I was planning my blog party for my 25th book, Breakfast at Giovanni’s. She’d just published her first book, The Yorkshire Pudding Club, which I absolutely LOVED, and I think I sent her a fangirl email telling her how much I’d enjoyed her book. And we got chatting. And we have lots in common. (Ice cream, chocolate, Italy, cookery, dogs... The list goes on.) I’ve met her in real life, too, at RNA dos, and she’s as lovely and warm as her books (which, by the way, get better and better with each one – I’m so proud of her).

Anyway, over to Milly:

When Kate asked me to write a celebratory blog in honour of her 50th book (GO Girl!) there was nothing else I wanted to write about – or seemed more appropriate – than… love. Firstly because it’s relevant – and secondly… because I’m in it. Head over heels, seeing the world with a rose hue, grinning, sighing, brain-to-mush, love. I feel like I’m living one of my own books, to be honest. And no one is more surprised at that than me. I’ve been on my own for so long that I’d kind of accepted it was how it was always going to be. I still held out some hope – didn’t quite throw out all my high heels and replace them with brogues, and I continued to shave my legs even though there was no one to wrap them around, but I couldn’t exactly see it coming around the corner carrying a box of Milk Tray – and I acquired a couple of cats. You can’t give up hope in this job though – I couldn’t write about middle-aged women who ‘never thought it would happen to them’ only to find that it did - with conviction if I was some embittered old bag who had taken up permanent residence on a scrap heap.

So here I am ‘courting’. And I’d forgotten what a fraught business it can be. It opens your eyes to how rubbish your wardrobe is for a start. (Actually – that’s a lie. I have a wardrobe filled with lovely clothes… all a size too small waiting for me to ‘slim’ into.) Underarm stubble is a no-no and new lingerie is a must. Out come the cookery books so I can seduce my lover with something sexy and marvellous on a plate instead of knocking up chicken nuggets for the kids. Exfoliation occurs pre-bath and the Ped-egg is dusted off. Oh it’s not a low maintenance business this love thing – but I’d also forgotten how much fun it is. How exciting to know that you’re on someone’s mind and experience that delicious anticipation as you wait for them to turn up. I’d forgotten the joy of holding hands in the cinema, of booking a table for two, of having someone refer to you as ‘partner.’ And if all this sounds like teenage stuff, well… it is. Love sends you right back to being seventeen again. It doesn’t matter how saggy your stomach is or how many bags there are under your eyes – when you’re on someone’s thoughts, you zoom back to those heady teenage years when a spring was most definitely in your step (even if it is no longer in your boobs).

I’d love to tell you that this man rode into my life on a white charger but actually when he turned up at my door to ask me out I thought he was a gypsy come to see if there was any metal in my overflowing skip. One of my romances started with a skip funnily enough, so you see life does sometimes imitate art.

So… if there is anyone out there who has given up hope, don’t. Mr Rights are all over the place. Sooner or later you’ll bump into him if you don’t shut yourself away and start knitting. And boy, she says – with a grin that makes the Cheshire Cat look like Victor Meldrew - some of them are SO worth the wait ☺ !!!!

Milly’s offering a copy of White Wedding to one commentator – just leave a comment to be in with a chance to win ☺

You can find out more about Milly at her website
Or talk to her on Facebook at
Or follow her on Twitter @millyjohnson


Megan Wood said...

Fantastic post - Milly Johnson is a wonderful author! xxxx

Lesley Cookman said...

That is just so lovely, Milly. It just goes to show that real life romance exists. (Just forgive me if, at my incredible age, I actually HAVE given up!)

Kate Hardy said...

Megan - I totally agree :)

Lesley, isn't it just the perfect thing to read on a wet Sunday morning? She deserves every bit of happiness. (And, BTW, you are NOT old!!)

Paula Martin said...

You took me back to being seventeen again, Milly! Like Lesley, at my advanced age, I've given up - except for in my novels, where I play the part of all my heroines ;-)

Kath Webb said...

Love Millys books, they are my type of reading :)

Caroline said...

Great blog Milly. So glad you've got your own HEA. I met the DH at 39 so I was beginning to wonder if "Mr Right" was out there too! ;o) Caroline x

Sharon said...

Love Milly's books.

Would love to win a copy of this x

Melinda Hammond/Sarah Mallory said...

Aah, what a lovely post, Milly, well done, girl, you keep that lovin' feeling going as you can, it's great!

Debbie Viggiano said...

I already have White Wedding, just wanted to say what a wonderfully uplifting post and so pleased for you Milly x

bn100 said...

Very nice post.

Kate Hardy said...

First name drawn from the hat for 'White Wedding'- Sharon. Please contact me kate(dot)hardy(at)btinternet(dot)com with your details, and I'll get everything sorted :o) Thanks for taking part!