It's not often that an unpublished author gets to read from their work in a venue that has hosted Leonard Cohen and Phillip Glass and is home to the Welsh National Opera.
Last Thursday might have been a pretty blah sort of a day, what with the rain and the hassle at work, except for the evening, when I had the chance to play at being a real author, appearing at the Millennium Centre, reading from my American Title V entry Never Coming Home.
OK, so it was in the foyer, not the auditorium, and the audience was only about forty people, but even so - I had a great time.
It all came about courtesy of Academi - the Welsh literature promotion agency, which sponsors a series of Nights for the Unpublished, at various venues all over Wales. And - you've guessed it - unpublished writers and poets get to read their work - from a stage, with a microphone, and people sitting in front to listen, and everything. Fabulous practice for when I finally get a book published. Well - a girl has to have a dream.
There was an amazing variety of work on show, prose, poems, flash fiction, - but I don't think they'd ever had a romance writer before. And to top it all I got a mention in my local newspaper, though I didn't get to see it until I got home that night.
I might even have had a picture of me reading, if the camera hadn't thrown a sulk at the crucial moment. I did manage to get one of me standing in front of the stage during the interval - so I do have a memento/evidence. And wearing my Love Conquers tee shirt, of course.
I could get used to this kind of life - people actually clapped when I'd finished. I don't think it was because they were glad to see me leave the stage.