Well, I am utterly EXHAUSTED - and that's before I do the actual launches and readings.
As you can see from my (very personalized) flow chart above and the stuff now crossed out, since 1st October I have been working flat out on the launch of The Birth Machine reissue. Crossed out and done are the giveaway, poster-making and delivering, invitation-making for two launches (designing and distributing leaflets, facebook messaging and much, much endless emailing), press releases to local papers, contacting of listings publications, visits to bookshops with advance information of the publication and liaising with the bookshops holding the launches. Meanwhile I managed to do just one other thing: read Sue Guiney's fascinating new novel A Clash of Innocents and host her blog tour. You will see from the chart that I failed to do any of my other scheduled reading (or any other reading at all): I didn't get the book read for my reading group, and I still haven't got further than the first chapter of Kate Pullinger's Mistress of Nothing, which I'm reviewing for Eco-Libris's Green Book day on 10th November - the very same day as my London launch: I hope I manage that manoeuvre; I've been so preoccupied I got the date wrong and only belatedly discovered the clash!
But on Wednesday this week I came to a point where there wasn't all that much more I could do for the moment (at least not that I'd thought of), and for the first time I relaxed. On Wednesday night I slept right through for the first time in ages, and lo and behold I woke in the morning with the start of a migraine - the usual symptom for me of relaxation after stress. Not that in fact there weren't still things to do. There was a question mark over books getting from the distributors to Waterstone's Deansgate via the 'hub' in time for the launch next Wednesday, which needed to be sorted out, though my lovely publisher Jen came to my rescue and fixed it. And then there were the trains and hotels to book for my few days' trip away - and god, doesn't that take time - and isn't it confusing: I ended up paying £20 more for one leg of a journey than I discovered later I'd have done if I'd booked in a slightly different way! That trip will be exciting, though: it will include not just my own London launch but a visit to Brighton to see my good friend and fellow Salt author Vanessa Gebbie and celebrate the publication of her wonderful-looking new collection, Storm Warning.
But you know, I don't even think it's just the work that's tiring - I know from experience that it's not, as I've done it for others. It's just so damned emotionally draining, I find, pushing your own work. But maybe that's just me. I blame the parents...