Friday, February 06, 2009

More Celebrations

It seems as if there are 'Harlequin Birthdays' appearing all over the place. Yesterday I got a package of international editions of my books and amongt them was a Japanese edition with the special flash on it for Harlequin Japan's 30th Anniversary.

So with M&B's Centenary, Harlequin USA's Diamond Anniversary and now Japan's 30th, there is sop much evidence of how just long lasting and popular Harlequin Romances are. And who worldwide that popularity is. It's a great feeling to be part of such a major force in popular reading.

And a little scary to think that of those 30 years that Harlequin Japan has been around, I'll soon have been published for 25 of them! December 2009 marks the 25th anniversary of my very first published book. I'm working on celebrations for that myself.

And if there's something that brought this home to me even more, it's the fact that this particular Japanese translation is actually a reprint of one of my earlier books. It's The Groom's Revenge which was originally published in 1997 - 12 years ago! This was first published in Japan in 1997 and now it's being reissued as a 'Classic' in their 30th year.

Which is pretty amazing when I was just talking to someone about my childhood in Yorkshire when no one believed I would ever achieve my ambition of writing a single book for publication, never mind still be writing them 25 years after I first started out.

And that's something that will be very much in my mind when I head for Fishguard and the Writers' and Artists' Weekend two weeks from today. I have an interesting class, the youngest of which is just 16. How great that she - with her mother - is serious enough about her writing to go on a weekend course to learn as much as she can. I would have loved to do that when I was 16.

That's one of the reasons why I enjoy teaching writing when I can fit it in. I can't guarantee anything. My students may never ever be published - or one of them may just be the next JK Rowling - but either way they are putting their energies, time and enthusiasm into learning and trying and I really respect that.

So I'm looking forward to Fishguard. And when you add in the fact that I'll also be meeting up with wonderful friends Anne and Gerry Hobbs who run these weekends as well as the fabulous Caerleon Writers' Holidays (where I'll also be teaching in July) then I just can't wait.
Incidentally, Caerleon Writers' Holidays are celebrating their 25th this year too. Obviously 1984 was a very good year!

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