Today is the day after the night before. And I am still processing, as one does after a major life event.
Last night, in Dubray Bookshop in Grafton St, O’Brien Press gave White Feathers the send-off of a lifetime. To a packed ensemble (I’d been generous with the invitations and there was a great turnout!) Michael O’Brien, founder, gave a rousing speech where he pledged his support for the novel and expressed his belief in me as a writer. It’s a great feeling to have the support and interest from one’s publisher and the speech filled me with good cheer.
Then Arlene Hunt, crime novelist and Novel Fair judge, was the guest speaker. She hit the ball out the park – i.e. was magnificent. She talked about reading the initial partial when adjudicating the Novel Fair, then going to bed, then picking it up a second time and reading it again. And how even then she’d had a feeling about it. From my interactions with Arlene when we were practising our pitches for the Fair, I in turn got the eerie feeling she understood where the manuscript was going before I did. My thanks to her for taking the time out to do this for me 🙂
Then it was my turn. I read an extract from the book, the point where our protagonist Eva first encounters the women who form the new Order of the White Feather. I got a bit carried away doing Mrs Humphrey Ward, and all my elocution lessons in primary school suddenly kicked in as she boomed and ranted and raged about the foul Hun and his depredations. Then I talked a bit about the cover and how it symbolised the emotional violence at the heart of White Feathers. There also might have been some singing… I couldn’t confirm or deny that…also my very small nephew O had a cameo – and stole the show and everyone’s hearts…
I’m really delighted to have been able to launch in such a great venue – Dubray Books have been wonderful and really encouraging and even gave me a little gift! – and to have been able to say at last, it’s out there! And to express my appreciation to everyone who came and offered their support. Your presence made it a great success.
Enjoy some pictures – all unless specified otherwise taken by and copyright of Colm Mahady of Fennell Photography
Michael O’Brien, founder of O’Brien Press
Michael O’Brien and Arlene Hunt, crime novelist and guest speaker (taken by Elizabeth Rose Murray)
Taking the mike (taken by Elizabeth Rose Murray)
Signing for friend and fellow-choral-singer Sue Maxwell
These are all so far. I reserve the right to load up more! In the meantime, Sinead O’Hart also blogged about the night!