When I first met Kate Walker, I was at a Mills & Boon author lunch, very wet behind the ears (we’ve been trying to work out when it was, and between us we think maybe 2003), and everyone had to move seats with each course so you got to talk to different people… and I ended up sitting next to this very nice lady. We were chatting away – and then she told me her name and I realised that I was sitting next to a Very Famous Author indeed, one whose books I’d enjoyed for years! But she wasn’t up there on a pedestal breathing rarefied air – she was down to earth and nice :o) And she’s remained a good, supportive friend through all these years since – and I hit my last milestone (25 books) at the same time as her, so it was lovely to share a special day. (Hmm. Am going to shut up now before I make us both feel old!)
Over to Kate:
Celebrating Scary Kate
It seems appropriate that my day for posting on Kate’s 50th book blog party comes just after we’ve both got back from London where we were at the annual Association of Mills & Boon Authors’ lunch. That’s because it was at one of these lunches some years ago (can’t actually remember how many!) that I first met up with the person I have come to call T’Other Kate. Chance put us sitting beside each other on a long dining table and so of course we started to chat. It was easy and instant - and we’ve been talking ever since!
Hang on though – ‘easy and instant’? Hmm – some people will be wanting to question that. How could it be easy, they’ll ask, when my main nickname for Kate is of course the other one I coined for her – Scary Kate? How can she be easy and Scary at the same time?
It’s simple – Kate herself, in person, is not at all scary. It’s hard to imagine a warmer, friendlier, more chatty – and easy to chat to - woman. She always seems to be smiling - even when life wears that smile down rather – and she has so many interests and involvements that there’s never any lack of subjects to talk about. She can even out-nerd my husband (the Babe Magnet) on his fascination with history, old documents and local stories – and that takes some doing! (She also stole his eyes – not literally but she said she was going to use them for the hero’s eyes in one of her books. He was delighted by that.)
So perhaps I should explain – Scary Kate . . .
Well, when we first met I was the established author. With my hopeless memory for dates, I forget how many years I’d been writing, how many books I’d written but I do know that T’Other Kate was at the beginning of her career. A few books – Medicals – accepted and published. It was obvious, reading those books, that she was destined for a successful career but I had no idea how much so! It was a case of light the blue touch paper and stand well back.
As someone who’s not the fastest of writers myself, I’ve been standing back ever since. Watching as Kate produces books at a rate of words that I can only envy. And not only Medicals – she was one of the very first authors to be published in RIVA (way back when they were Modern Extras in another incarnation of the line). She even dedicated one of those – Strictly Legal - to me. It’s on my bookcase now in front of me as I write this. And now she’s about to be published in Cherish. And that’s without counting those local history and other factual books – see – scary . . .
But that’s not all. I mentioned those other interests – music, piano, guitar, now there’s ballroom dancing. Food and cooking – Oh dear me, Kate’s hospitality is five star and the meals she provides. Well, all I can say about that is forget the diet if you’re ever lucky enough to go and stay with her! The Babe Magnet and I did once and we’re still talking about the food.
And you know that saying that if you want something doing, ask a busy person – one of my favourite memories of Scary Kate is – coincidentally – from my own 50th book celebration. We had a party in Lincoln and Kate was invited. What I didn’t know was that she was getting busy in the background in the days before, organising surprises - cards – flowers, a beautiful necklace . . . She even managed to have a secret discussion with the Babe Magnet to find out what flowers would be special for me. It was a wonderful night and made all the more so by the way that Kate and so many other writer friends joined in.
See what I mean about scary?
Many many congratulations on this ‘golden’ book, Kate! And here’s to many more!
I had to think about what I’d like to give away to celebrate this special book. Unfortunately, life has been rather stressful lately so I don’t have a new book coming out to talk about myself. But then I thought that there is one book that has special memories of me and Scary Kate and that’s my own 50th title – The Spaniard’s Red-Hot Revenge. This book is also in a 3 in 1 collection – Claimed By The Spaniard together with 2 other Sicilian books of mine – The Sicilian’s Wife and Sicilian Husband, Blackmailed Bride.
So I have 2 copies of Claimed by the Sicilian to give away to someone who posts in the comments. I was going to ask you to say what scares you – but perhaps not! What don’t you tell me if there’s something special you’re celebrating this year. I know plenty of people who have had a tough year – so I’d really like to hear lots of good news!
You can find out more about Kate on her website - http://www.kate-walker.com and her blog http://kate-walker.blogspot.co.uk