I got up bright and early, by which I mean I set my alarm clock, for a change. I was looking forward to an event that I’ve not been able to attend for far too many years owing to the distance, to get there and back in a day. It was time for the Penguin Random House Highlights Presentation, zoom version.
While I lamented the fact that I’d only actually heard of one of their advertised authors, Malorie Blackman, I still believed I’d learn something new. I did. It was that there was no zoom link forthcoming.
Though to be fair, when after half an hour I emailed the person who had invited me and also reminded me of said invite, there was an automated response, with the actual link enclosed. But I don’t believe I should have worked that one out on my own.
I was able to listen in on about 25 minutes of the presentation, which was well enough done. Less of the embarrassing pauses and delays one gets used to in cyberspace. But by then I was rattled enough not to take notes, so I took no notes. Let’s simply agree that there will be books in 2021, and they will be nice and just right for some children of various ages. The authors all came across as very pleasant people.
But there was none of the reminiscing by one [live] author to another, regarding who had been drunk at the last publishing party. (Which I’m obviously too discreet to mention, even now.) There were no freebies or piles of new books to help yourself to. I don’t care about the wine. But meeting people, be they the famous author over there, or the PR assistant over here, doesn’t matter. It’s networking. And this stood me in good stead for many years.