I'm now in Auckland, staying in a budget hotel in Grey Lynn, because tomorrow evening - Tuesday 10th August - I have to do a talk and Q and A session at the Women's Bookshop to promote my new biography of Katherine Mansfield. Penguin have produced a lovely design for the book, which looks like this:
Tonight Neil and I are going out to dinner to celebrate publication with the publisher, a couple of friends, and Sarah Sandley, who is going to introduce me tomorrow night and chair the discussion. I'm really looking forward to this evening, because so far contact with everyone at Penguin has been by email which is very impersonal and it's great to meet the people behind the names. Contrary to public perception, it's not the normal thing these days for publishers to wine and dine their authors. Unless you're Lee Childs or J.K. Rowling, they can't afford to do it!
Auckland is a big, sprawling city, spread out around the various inlets from the oceans on both sides of the north island. We've been lost several times just finding our way round. I have also, unfortunately, had my email account hacked and so my entire data base has been receiving spam purporting to come from me. Ugh! But this is one of the penalties of using WiFi on the move - many of the networks have poor security, but what can you do? I will have to find time to change my mail address which is a bit of a pain, but can't be helped. What I need is a nice glass of New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc to cheer me up!