Monday, September 20, 2010


It's Monday so I must be back from London . . . right? I think I left part of my brain in the capital as it has taken me till now to catch up with all I have to do.
And I had such a great time meeting up with friends old and new and talking and drinking a little wine . . .
Let's see, Wednesday afternoon was spent settling into the hotel, making a mad dash to Oxford Street to find a book for the Babe Magnet - I told him his History Magazine wouldn't be enough to read - but I think that was just an excuse to make sure he 'needed' to raid the bookshops. Then we met up with Michelle Reid and Sandra Marton and had a wonderfully relaxed evening with them. At RWA Sandra always invites everyone to a pizza party on the first evening and although this wasn't RWA we continued the tradition with pizzas for all. Great fun and an opportunity to talk . . . a lot.

Thursday was the day that Sharon Kendrick had invited some of us to lunch in her home so I met up with American authors Lynn Raye Harris and Jennie Lucas who were over for the AMBA meeting, and Abby Green who was over from Dublin and we all made our way to Winchester. We had a brief tour of the city, including the Cathedral where - for the first time ever (what a confession for a romance writer) I was able to visit Jane Austen's grave there.

Thursday evening there was a dinner for what seemed like a roll call of Presents/Modern authors - Sara Craven, Sandra Marton, Michelle Reid, Abby Green, Natalie Rivers, India Grey, Jennie Lucas, (these two are pictured here) Lynn Raye Harris, Christina Hollis, Sara Morgan.

Friday was of course the date of the AMBA lunch itself. I took my camera and then got completely involved in talking with friends - I was lucky enough to be seated next to lovely Liz Fielding - forgetting to take any pictures most of the time. The same with the Mills & Boon toast to their writers which was held after the event. So I'm indebted to Kate Hardy for this pic of myself (centre) together with Sophie Weston (in brown) and Joanna Maitland at the 'toast' . (Kate also has more detail on the venue and food on her blog if you'd like to see it. )
Among the things talked about were the New covers - which are now appearing on the bookshop shelves all ovder the country - the New Voices contest, and the upcoming Leander Rowing Calendar which will be appearing on the M&B site in the next few weeks - so watch out for that.
Special thanks have to go to Natalie Rivers and Sharon Kendrick for organising the event so efficiently and making it so enjoyable.
By the end of the evening, I was just about talked out and my feet were protesting at being in smart shoes all that time. So with the Magnet, Michelle Reid and her husband and Brigid Coady who came to join us after the 'toast' we headed for a casual dinner at an Italian restaurant.
Saturday morning, we just had time to share breakfast together - Michelle, Sandra and I and our husbands - before sadly packing up and heading back home. It was a fantastic few days and I'm always astonished and delighted by the warm friendships that are forged in spite of living in different countries and hundreds of miles away from each other - as a result of this job of writing romance that we all share. It's something that I never anticipated when I started out, but it's one of the very best benefits of the career I've had.


Caroline said...

Sounds like a fab weekend was had by all. Caroline x

Rachel Lyndhurst said...

Fabulous, marvellous, wonderful! Thanks for the pictures, Kate, really enjoyed hearing all about it.



Rachael Thomas said...

Looks like a great time. So many M&B writers in one place!

Kate Walker said...

It was fab Caroline - hectic but fab.

Kate Walker said...

Hi Rachel I'm glad you enjoyed the report and the pictures

Kate Walker said...

My thoughts exactly Rachael - sometimes I look round and those events and can't quite believe I'm in a room filled with all these wonderful writers. I think of the books of theirs I've read and I'm over-awed.


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