I know you are all dying to know what happened this weekend but sorry folks, “what happens in Bedford, must stay in Bedford.”
All I shall say is there was much frivolity, plenty of high jinks, dancing, frolicking, snogging and fun. I should at least elaborate on the ‘snogging’ part. Actors, dressed in period costume played out scenes from a romance novel and performed in the town. The scenes involved two young people in the throes of love and scenes ended with a passionate embrace. I tried to get the young girl to swap clothes with me and let me take her place but she refused so I had to seek solace in allowing myself to be photographed by two young men “Oooh young man!” who were looking for a cover model for the next Mills & Boon release. Clearly, it will be about a middle-aged author who has a cheeky grin and mad hair.
I then stole and ate my through all the sweets, chocolates and biscuits from the table next to ours at the book fair – sorry Safkhet Publishing - couldn’t help myself. If you leave out mini chocolates what do you expect? I had missed breakfast, after all.
At one point I joined in the 'readathon' in the shopping centre. What an experience that was! Imagine attempting to read a romantic passage from your book that you have slaved over for months, outside Boots in a busy shopping centre, while people bowl past you or kids scream. I was number four in the line up. I felt for the three in front of me as they read, microphone in hand, to an oblivious audience. Luckily, I don’t write romance so I launched in with a couple of jokes to grab people’s attention. It worked until I stopped doing my stand up act. Hats off to Nicky Wells who trumped my efforts by bursting into Bon Jovi’s You Give Love a Bad Name to grab attention. I should have thought of that. My singing would have stopped the entire population of Bedford for a fortnight. They’d have all needed treatment from the doctor for earache.
The weekend was brilliant fun but incredibly exhausting – must be my age. Two late nights and one sleepless one thanks to being next to a lift shaft took its toll. The hotel took pity on my haggard face after the first night when I explained that the lift went up and down all night and I couldn’t sleep. They changed my room and even better, upgraded me to a business suite where I found digestive biscuits and a view of the river – hence the photo today.
Linn B Halton and I were late to dinner the next night due to an appointment with a bottle of champagne and so were booted off our quiz team table. We formed a new team with some of the Romaniacs – a splendid bunch of fillies (oops sorry – I was getting into my Mills & Boon voice then). What an entertaining and lovely crowd they were. I also met fellow Famous Five Plus author Gilli Allen who looked very glamorous in her lacy black gloves and outfit. Of course we didn’t win.50 Swigs of Chardonnay, our old team, trounced us. They were probably better off without us although I did know who manufactured the sweets ‘Love Hearts’
I used my time wisely in the upgraded room and spent what was left of the second night putting the finishing touches to my latest book which now is ready for the first run through and edit.
In short, I met an incredible bunch of people. They are some seriously funny, bright, passionate and interesting people who I would love to meet again. They all work very hard and are inspirational people. It must have been good because I have come back, baggy eyed but refreshed and even more determined to get some more books written. Bad luck Hubby. Good thing you are learning to cook. I have a feeling you’ll be needing those skills over the next few months.
For those of you who were hoping to see photos of us misbehaving I think you'll find videos and photographs on Facebook. I have put up a video of us dancing around a handbag on my author page - click here.
Thanks to everyone for making it so much fun and thanks to all of you for your kind comments on the post below. Yes, of course Hubby was alright. He enjoyed himself and now knows how to use the control for the television - groan!
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Question: How many mystery writers does it take to change a light bulb?
Answer: Two, one to screw it almost all the way in and the other to give it a surprising twist at the end.