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“Never read your reviews”

“Never read your reviews,” Joanna Trollope told me when she found out at the Emirates Airlines Festival of Literature that my debut novel was out that day. She touched my arm and leaned toward me as she said it, making me feel like she really cared about this and that it was an important thing I must never do, like walking across the train tracks or hitch-hiking with strangers.

“You’ve achieved a goal, which is to be published,” Graeme-The-Rosie-Project-Simsion told me, as he bought the first ever copy of Coming Home that I’d ever signed. “Everything else is just gravy.”

Good advice I’m sure. And maybe one day I’ll heed it. Read More

Four days to go: Is this as good as it gets?

In 2010, a friend bought me a book called The Passion Test. At a loose end (I’m laughing as I type that), I read the book, even though I’m usually more inclined to hurl self-help books at the wall than actually read them. As I read it, I took “the passion test”, which basically helps you identify what you need to be doing with your life in order to be happy from the inside out. Not that I wasn’t happy from the inside out to begin with. But – as I said: loose end.

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When I grow up, I want to be… David Walliams

The Emirates Airline Festival of Literature 2015 (from now on to be called EAFOL15) kicked off today with a session by David Walliams, who was at the festival to talk about his children’s books.

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