I travelled up to Preston in Lancashire yesterday……..
Due to being shortlisted for the Lancashire Children’s Book Award (Oh I do love saying that!), I was invited to Borders bookshop in Preston to talk to a group of Year 9s. I was happy to accept, but honestly I was shit scared! Of course I know it’s stupid and irrational, and if I were to write down a list of the 10 most important things in my life to worry about; talking to a group of teenagers wouldn’t feature in it at all. I’ve never been a comfortable speaker, but I really wanted to do this and treat it as a challenge and good experience. Baz Luhrmann advises us to do one thing that scares us every day, and I haven’t really done anything scary for a while so I figured my time had come to catch up a bit.
Anyway, I think it went ok; though I think I spoke too fast and I did forget a few things from my speech, but I managed to fit those bits into the Questions and Answers afterwards. There were some great questions and actually I preferred that part. Johnathon Delaney who is also shortlisted for his book, The Spook’s Curse, was also there, so I had some company at the front, which was nice.
I felt very honoured that our audience actually wanted my signature afterwards, and I had chance to meet some great people. If any of you are reading this now – thank you for coming up to speak to me and I really appreciate the feedback on Be In The Place.