I was impressed by the Macmillan New Writing turnout. It’s surely rare that a book imprint has such a community built up around it. Flying the MNW flag along with the editor and PR department were LC Tyler, Matt Curran, a lady with pink hair whose name someone please fill me in on, and I think the tall fellow in the corner I didn’t get a chance to meet was Tim Stretton. Hello, Tim. There was representation from Aliya’s agency too.
I would have liked to have said more than a brief passing hello to Ian Hocking, who was also there, along with his better half. I did have a bit of a chat to the very nice Alice Tait, who illustrated the cover and was in attendance with her fiancé, and the two phantom book-counting, tomato-loving veggiebox aficionados, one of whom was responsible for the spooky trailer for Light Reading, who both travelled down to London with Aliya and her parental entourage.
There were also several—count them: several—readers. I think this is the first time I have seen them in public in relation to mine or Aliya’s work. It was an eerie moment watching her sign a book for a—in case you missed it last time—reader. Their attendance was in some ways probably more appreciated than anyone else, if slightly intimidating. The whole experience has interfered slightly with my ambitions to get a proper book published.
All in all I’m sure she’s very pleased with how it all went, if a little weirded out that her book was everywhere and there was a billboard-sized picture of her face in the display window.And no, I didn't take any pictures either.