It's over a month since I last posted, after a particularly bad week. This week has been better, author-biz-wise. No word of international sales, or anything like that, but the film option for RUINED was renewed, and lots of publicity requests for RANGATIRA are coming in. The novel comes out on Halloween, and I'll be home in New Zealand for the launch.
Actually, about a hundred hours of this week were dedicated to getting together a mailing list for the launch. I couldn't find anything useful - like, say, the list for my last launch. The only one I could find on the computer was the one for QUEEN OF BEAUTY, a book published in 2002, and everyone has remarried and/or moved house since then.
Much of today was spent preparing for a photo session, because it's time I had some new pictures. First up: hair cut. It looked really great until I walked home in misting rain.
I had to wait a while at the salon, so I decided to use the time wisely, exploring the great moral and philosophical questions of our time – e.g. “Is Beyoncé really pregnant?” To help me in this quest for truth, I read the captions and columns of OK magazine. This is the British version of OK (OKUK, as I think of it), and this means its pages are peopled with the ‘stars’ of BIG BROTHER and the ex-husbands of Katie Price, one of whom may be about to have a Druid wedding ceremony at Stonehenge. OKUK is highly educational, filled with celebrity insight. Kerry Katona is for the Dale Farm Travellers; Cliff Richard is for corporal punishment. My favourite column in the current issue is written by Jedward, brothers with cartoon hairstyles who are popstars of some kind. Jedward contend that the "UK is a really cool country because you've got Scotland, you've got England and Northern Ireland and Wales, and we've got the Olympics coming which will be like an upgrade for the UK." Wise words.
Later in the afternoon I paid someone to ice my face with an excess of make-up ("Is that what you're wearing?" she asked, trying to conceal her dismay). Then I met up with the photographer, Mike Brooke, in the Merchant City. We took pictures in the Trans-Europe Cafe, the Corinthian Club, and an alleyway near the music hall where Stan Laurel made his stage debut. Hopefully I'll look good in some of them. A friend, Sarah Zebaida, sent me an email this morning wishing me well for the session. You still have good skin, she pointed out, "despite your enormous chronological age."