T-Minus 1 Day to (a Book) Launch: About the Author

It’s almost he-ere…

Now that the logistics are taken care of (the books, the posters, the invites) and everyone I’ve ever met in my entire life who lives within a twenty-mile radius of the city has been roped in to attending, all that’s left to do now is prepare myself for prolonged exposure to the public, photographs taken in natural light and not shocking the people who haven’t met me in the (ample) flesh for a while.

Well, not shocking them too much anyway.

The Book Launch Outfit

A sneak peek at the Book Launch Outfit...

Much like my crazy book launch promotion ideas (like hiring a model to wear a Mickey Mouse costume and hang around outside the shop) and my crazy book launch beverage ideas (like serving orange juice in champagne flutes – orange juice? Florida? Get it?), there were a number of garment ideas that went out the window too, including a palm tree-emblazoned vest from Oasis which I still might invest in (no pun intended) to wear another time. In the end I settled for something summery and blue – Florida is, after all, the Sunshine State, and everything about Mousetrapped seems to be blue – and dug out my rocket ship necklace to accessorize it.

Magic Underwear

Picking the outfit was easy but getting into it would require the wearing of industrial-strength magic underwear. For those unfamiliar with this particular joy in life (and yes, I’m being very, very sarcastic), magic underwear is a band of material that squeezes, pushes, pulls, contours, hurts and asphyxiates. It requires that you be a trained contortionist to get into or out of it and once it’s on, there’s no eating, drinking or taking deep breaths. You should also keep a scissors with you, a kind of ‘Cut in case of emergency’ type thing. It rocks.

War Paint

I'll be going for the natural look. NOT!

While I refuse to leave the house without make-up, I do try to never look like I’m wearing any. Well, that crap stops now. The bookshop is in a shopping centre lit by natural light and there will be at least five cameras there; I need to load on the war paint, especially since I’ve spent 95% of the last year indoors, writing my, um, opus. On Tuesday morning I spent a giddy thirty minutes in an enormous Boots, throwing all sorts of lovely stuff into my basket without much thought, and then afterwards having a minor heart attack as the cashier told me the total cost was €152. (No, really. That’s how much I spent.) Spoils included:

  • A brightening primer. I’m addicted to Soap and Glory products, so I went with their Bright Here, Bright Now Instant Radiance Energy Balm. It goes on between your moisturizer and your foundation and makes your skin all glowy-looking. Especially good for pasty writers who drink too much coffee and don’t get enough sleep.
  • A foundation brush. If you’ve never put on your foundation with a brush, boy are you in for a treat! (Warning: try to use only for special occasions and at night. It goes on and it stays on, but it goes on thick. Beware.)
  • Eyebrow kit. Benefit have the best eyebrow kit ever. Brow Zings is a combination of a wax and a powder that is applied to the eyebrows with a small, flat brush. It isn’t as harsh as a pencil and you control how light or dark it goes on. Plus it comes in a handy compact with a cute little tweezers. Adorable! If you team it with Benefit’s Powerflage, dabbing the pink powder under the arch, you’ll have amazing brows. And possibly look constantly surprised.

So that’s it. I’ll be getting up at dawn to deep-condition my hair, wriggle my way into my magic underwear and apply several layers of make-up with what I hope will be enough skill to make it look like just the one. Then, after all these e-mails, blog posts, sleepless nights and reasons to part with money, it’ll be 12.30pm on Saturday and my book launch will have begun. Will I be sitting there all alone? Will there be crowd overspill outside the shop? Will anyone buy a copy? Will I have a double chin in every single photo, or just some of them?

Join me on Monday when, if I haven’t skipped the country due to the embarrassment, I’ll let you know.

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