Saturday, October 31, 2015
Launch of Used to Be
The launch for Used to Be was a real celebration - of the publication, of short stories in general, and of literary friendship. Writer friends old and new came, many of them short story writers.
Ailsa Cox, perhaps my most long-time writing colleague and now Professor of Short Fiction at Edge Hill University (and world expert on the work of Alice Munroe), and Nicholas Royle, Creative Writing lecturer at Manchester University and tireless promotor and editor of short stories, both graced the event with superb readings from brilliant short stories of their own.
It was wonderful to have there with us long-time writer-friends Cath Staincliffe, Livi Michael and Carl Tighe, and those with whom I've more recently chewed the cud about writing matters: fellow members of the Inklings writing group, Sarah-Clare Conlon and David Gaffney, and of the Narrative Research Group at Edge Hill University, John Rutter and Billy Cowan. Lovely too, to have the support of Doug and Jenny from the reading group, and Nick and Diane Duffy with whom John and I have attended many a Waterstone's reading and with whom we've had many a discussion about books, as well as friends from other walks of life. Thank you to all - your presence made the launch of book very special, and thank you to Waterstone's for hosting the event and looking after us so well. Thank you too, to Carys Bray who had been going to read, but was unfortunately prevented from attending.
A first review of Used to Be appears on Tim Love's blog today - in fact, it's a detailed, in-depth look at the book, and I thank him for his thoughtfulness and attention.