Thursday, 19 December 2013

Afternoon Tea, darts at breakfast, and a book release... It's been a busy couple of days...

When I say darts at breakfast, I don't mean I was throwing a few arrows while waiting for the toast machine to do its stuff. God forbid! That's an A&E visit waiting to happen that is... No. I mean darts players at breakfast. Actually, this is getting a bit confusing now. Let's start at the beginning...

As the majority of you who read this blog are probably aware, the Christmas novella I self-published last year - Christmas Without Icing - has now been published through Harper Impulse with a brand new title and a stunning new cover! The First Christmas Without You was also one of three winners in the Harper Impulse Winter Wonderland competition, and the prize for winning that was afternoon tea at Fortnum & Mason. Which is why, at the beginning of this week, I found myself down in London, still trying to believe that this was all really happening to me.

The Christmas tree at Covent Garden
And, of course, me being me, it wasn't just the thought of meeting my publishers over at the Harper Collins building and visiting the Harper Impulse offices that got me all excited. Or the idea of going all posh for an afternoon at one of the country's most prestigious department stores. Oh no. Finding out that we were staying in the same hotel as some of the darts players taking part in the World Darts Championship at the Alexandra Palace, that got me quite excited, too. So when I spotted Justin Pipe at breakfast on Wednesday morning, well, that started my day off pretty well that did. Unfortunately my celebrity spotting didn't extend much past that during my time in the capital, although I did spot Nick Hewer from The Apprentice in Leicester Square, so that took my total up to two! 

Me with the gorgeous Charlotte Ledger in the Harper Collins building
Anyway, my real reason for being in London was that afternoon tea at Fortnum and Mason, a place I never actually dreamed I'd be setting foot in. I mean, come on, I shop at Lidl and adore Morrisons sausage rolls! I'm not your average Fortnum & Mason client. So to be able to experience afternoon tea there was something I was going to enjoy. And I did! And it was even more special to share it with the gorgeous Charlotte, Katie and Kim from Harper Impulse, and fellow competition winner Kathy. I was a bit taken aback when a tea menu was put in front of me, though - yes, that's a menu, for tea. The stuff we usually squeeze out of a bag. I swear, I had no idea there were that many different kinds of tea... 

And the sandwiches, cakes and scones we had were just beautiful! Everything from smoked salmon to coronation chicken sandwiches, all perfectly cut with the crusts off; to tiny chocolate squares and something that tasted very much like a mini banoffi pie - they were all gorgeous! It was just a truly wonderful experience, and one I'll never forget. The perfect way to celebrate the release of my first book published through Harper Impulse. I can't thank everybody enough. I just had a fantastic time. And Charlotte, Katie and Kim were so lovely, as was Kathy. So, so lovely. 

Cake!! And that's the lovely Katie Sadler there in the background.

Right now I'm feeling very lucky. My book is out there, I've just had two fab days in London, and I've had the chance to experience something I would never normally have had the chance to do. And it's all thanks to the amazing team over there at Harper Impulse. You guys really are the best, and I'm so privileged to be part of the Harper Impulse family. Thank you!

The First Christmas Without You is available NOW from Amazon, Kobo, and iTunes


  1. Hi Michelle!

    It was great to meet you. I'm looking forward to reading your book!

    Happy Christmas! Kx

  2. It was lovely to meet you too, Kathy. :) And I can't wait until your book comes out and I can help spread the word about another fabulous Harper Impulse author!

    Have a great Christmas! :) x