June – or as I like to call it, publication month! The 9th is just around the corner, and I can’t wait to see Life Before Us as a real live book finally. It feels like forever since it was out of my hands – it’s really only a couple of months – and I’m impatiently awaiting delivery of my box of author copies….any day now, she said hopefully. I’ve opted not to have an official launch for this one, although my local bookshop, O’Mahony’s in Limerick, would be more than happy to host it. I felt a bit launch-weary, to be honest – and at this stage, I feel I’ve dragged everyone along to more than enough nights out! I am going to head up to Dublin on the 9th though – the plan is for me to visit the city centre bookshops for some signing in the morning, followed by lunch with a few from the publishers, which will be lovely – and then two nights later I’ve invited a small gang to the patio in Miltown Malbay (well, the patio if the weather obliges, indoors if it doesn’t) – for a glass or three of bubbly and a bite to eat, and I’ll feel I’ve given enough welcome to the newcomer. Number twenty; every time that thought hits me I feel like giggling in disbelief. Little did I think, when I took a year off teaching to try my hand at writing a novel, that I’d still be at it so many years later. I’m a lucky gal, with some wonderful readers on my side. Thank you all, I don’t take you for granted for a second.
In other news, I had a melanoma removed from my right arm in Feb, and just over a week ago I had some follow-up surgery as a matter of course, mainly to make it harder for it to recur, and also to check whether there’s been any spread. I’m very confident of a good outcome – results in a couple of weeks – because it was caught really early. Let that be a lesson to everyone – don’t ignore anything you think looks new, or odd, or changed. And slap on that sunscreen, or cover up – as I type this I’m sitting under an umbrella on the patio (see pic, featuring my trusty assistants) during one of the nicest days of the year so far, and I’m also wearing factor 50 on face and neck, and 30 elsewhere. I wasn’t always this careful – nothing like a little scare to remind you that the sun, lovely as she is, can do untold damage if given half a chance.
I hope you’re all well and happy, wherever you are. I hope you enjoy Life Before Us if you pick up a copy. I hope I can nail the next plot before too long more!!!