Things that make me smile a happy smile
- Reviewing Danyl Johnson’s first X-Factor audition on YouTube. Actually, it makes me cry, but it’s happy crying. That microphone bit, when he throws it from hand to hand … The bit when he bounces back to the spot he’s supposed to be standing on and grins. He’s enjoying everything about that audition. Love, love, love it. (Didn’t like his latest performance, by the way, but hey, 8 million views on YouTube can’t be wrong about that first one.)
- Charlie Brooker’s response in the Guardian to Jan Moir’s article on Stephen Gately in the Mail. Sometimes you just have to stop prejudice and innuendo in its tracks and call it what it is. If you can be relatively funny at the same time, it helps.
- The zine that Tavi Gevinson made for the pop up shop at Colette. (I’m so old I still call them maga-zines! Get me!) That girl is depressingly talented, but hey, I have a novel out so I can afford to be gracious.
- Emily Gale’s kitchen. She posted a photo to show how tidy it is, pre-her temporary housework ban so she can concentrate on writing. However, the photo merely reveals how gorgeous it is. I will now post a photo of my kitchen, so readers can compare and understand why I WANT Emily’s. (And no, I haven’t been doing a housework ban. Mine is just like this. But it does include my husband emptying the dishwasher WITHOUT BEING ASKED, so maybe I get extra points for that.)
- Strange connections. Who would guess that an ex-pupil at my son’s school would turn out to be friends with an about-to-be-Oscar-nominated actress, who is completely fabulous, is Anna Wintour’s new favourite person and is off to the London premiere of her film tonight … AS AM I!!! As research! Go my job!
- Girls and (their mothers) who write via the Threadsthebook website to say how much they’ve enjoyed the book. Go you!
- MY NEW SHED. Emily Gale may have a kitchen to die for, but I have a shed. I’ve had it for a little while, but we only managed to get the desk into it over the weekend. It is FREEZING COLD in there, because we haven’t got round to heating it yet, but it is GORGEOUS. It’s got my pens, and my books, and my papers, and my Danielle Scutt Barbie, and a view of the garden, and peace and quiet (apart from the sound of the squirrels overhead), and no wifi yet, so I can’t get distracted by blogging. (I’m doing this in the dining room.) That big, empty space at the back is where my MOOD BOARD is going to be. Not that I’m excited or anything. Roald Dahl, eat your heart out. Virginia Woolf, it is a room of my own and you would be proud of me. OK, so it’s also storage for the lawn mower and my husband’s power tool collection, but most of it is MINE. All I have to do now is sell about fifty million novels to pay for it.
- On the subject of homes, this table, which my brother made (and went on sale today at Purves & Purves. Oh wow). Yes, really. My brother is super-cool. Anyone who’s read Threads will suddenly be going ‘Aha!’. And you’re right.
- Things beginning with ‘H’. On Saturday, I’m talking at the Hay Festival event in London, then signing books in Hatchards and Harrods. I feel like a song from My Fair Lady. Please come and say hello, and tell me which are your favourite bits of the book. And whether or not you’re going to enter the competition to go to London Fashion Week and see your dress made by Tammy. And your ideas for making the world a better place.
Oh, and if you can persuade a friend to buy a book, that would be wonderful. Donations to Save The Children (hardback) or the Sophia Bennett Shed Benevolent Fund (paperback). You choose.