In all good bookshops

Somebody just speeded up the tape.

I AM IN A BOOKSHOP!!!!!!!!!!!!!

That may sound a bit of an odd confession for a writer – and I’m not actually in a bookshop, I’m at home, writing this blog – but MY BOOK IS IN A BOOKSHOP. Or, to be more precise, about twenty copies are, in a neat little pile next to the till. My local bookshop is SO kind to local authors.

Threads through the window of Village Books

I’m not sure about the official launch date, which is in three weeks, but Threads is definitely in the real world. My husband opened his Amazon copy this morning. That was quite exciting (he filmed it), but the bookshop thing was VERY VERY VERY exciting.

And this despite the fact that the bookshop was closed by the time I got there from the library and I had to peek through the window to see if Threads was there. I should stress that although I have many strange habits, looking through that window isn’t one of them. It’s only that I’d received an email from lovely bookshop lady, saying they’d arrived and asking me to sign some. I assumed they’d all still be in a box at the back, but no.

It was weird. Totally, totally weird, how special it was, after everything that’s happened recently. Partly because my lovely publisher decided to do the jacket in four colours, so it looks as if I’ve written loads already, and largely because exactly a year ago I was still writing one of the last drafts. Nobody had read it yet. I’d be going off to a coffee shop that no longer exists about six doors down from the bookshop and trying to compose the final chapters. I knew about some competition deadline, but couldn’t remember what the competition was and knew for an absolute fact that I wouldn’t win it anyway. I thought of Threads as my apprenticeship. Of course I had my moments when I pictured the movie premiere, but actually my biggest serious hope was to attract the attention of an agent and find out where to go from there.

And now, there it is. An artefact, and a very pretty one at that. In a pile. In an actual bookshop. That actual readers of books can go in and buy, any time they feel like it.

I’d go back tomorrow and gloat, but I’m off doing a research interview for book 3. How much do I love my job? VERY VERY MUCH. Wouldn’t you?

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