A truly fabulous Aussie Year launch at Black Cat Books

Sunday, 20 October 2013

Yesterday I was in Brisbane celebrating the launch of An Aussie Year with illustrator and dear friend Tina Snerling, at Black Cat Books in Paddington. We had So. Much. Fun.

A sparkling, warm spring day meant an outside launch--on the fabulous tiered-walkways and platforms behind the bookshop. Hadley and Stephanie from Black Cat Books did a fabulous job setting up several of the platforms for the guests, who sat under marquees or the boughs of overhanging trees. We really couldn't have asked for a more beautiful setting.

Tina, her mum Elizabeth, and I set up the books, the lolly bar {boy was that a hit}, the colouring activities, goodie bags and speech bubbles for the photos.

Then the fabulous Michael Gerard Bauer arrived--he was tasked with officially launching the book and I'm ashamed to say I hadn't even provided him with an advance copy {in my extreme busyness} so the poor man had to invest in his own copy. I gave him another copy and I also gave chocolates. Chocolate cures all ills {including forgetfulness!}.

Then the divine Ms Dimity Powell and family turned up, and we managed a quick catch-up as the guests arrived--it was also a very lovely thing to briefly meet Coralie Ross, who popped in on the way to grandparent duties. Such a sweet thing to do.

Some very special local people came along to show their support, including Pamela Rushby, Megan Daley and her wee lass, Sam Sochacka, Maureen O'Shea and Jenny Stubbs. My beautiful sister {below} Lisa was also there, as was my gorgeous brother-in-law Greg who took these great photos {thanks, Smoothie!}.

The only one missing was our divine publisher Anouska Jones, who had been grounded due to the New South Wales bushfires. She was very much missed, as was dear friend and author, Brisbane-girl Sheryl Gwyther, who's currently in the States and couldn't be there.

The kids began to pour in ...

... then the glorious Michael said a few wonderful {and insightful and generous} words about An Aussie Year {even I wanted to buy it afterwards!} ...

... then Tina and I got into welcoming the kids and reading through the book.

It was so lovely to listen to and watch the response of the kids as we read through the months of the year, drawing on a selection of traditions, events and quirks.

Then it was time to set up for signing ...

The kids got busy at the lolly bar and got similarly busy with their superb colourings-in.

With the lovely Dimity, Michael and Tina, in the photos below. This launch was so exciting and so busy and wonderful. I loved seeing everyone, but it's when you look back at the photos that you realise how very fortunate you are to have such incredible, talented, vibrant people in your life. I wish I could live it all over again!

As the afternoon wound down and we made our way out of the store, we were so delighted and warmed to see Aussie Year posters at every turn, and the book keeping such great company on the shelves, and on a table and stand at the front of the store.

What a truly fabulous afternoon. Thank you to everyone who came along, and to Black Cat Books for showing us such warmth and generosity. We sold stacks of books, met some glorious people {some virtual friends and some brand new!} and chatted with the most gorgeous kids.

What better way to spend an afternoon? with books, kids and friends.

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