I hooked up with the fabulous Kay Jaybee (who came from faraway places to join the party) at Earl’s Court tube station after we’d both run the gauntlet from flat tyres to delays on trains to tube closures due to weekend engineering works. We dropped our things at our hotel, had lunch then headed over to Olympia and the main event.
We just had time for a quick look around before the book signing. A quick look around was no easy task in such a large venue with such a variety of exhibits. Our recci took in everything from latex to corsets to photography, from art to jewelry to sex toys, from whips to dungeon kit to full body painting. After writing The Initiation of Ms Holly’s hot biker bloke, Morgan, I was especially keen on watching an artist clothing her lovely colleague in a freshly painted coat of leopard spots. There was something for everyone. If the booths and displays weren’t enough, there were on-going live performances headlined by Dita VonTeese.
The Xcite Books Booth was near one of the main corridors between exhibits, the perfect place to view the parade of people in latex and corsets, collars and leather, leashes and shoes! Wow, the shoes! There were stilettos and platforms and bum-high boots and biker boots in every colour and style imaginable.
I settled in at a signing table decked in an Xcite table cloth and stacked artfully with gorgeous golden copies of The Initiation of Ms Holly. Once I’d made myself comfy, I retrieved my special blue book signing pen from the depths of my bag and did a few warm-up stretches to prepare my fingers for my first ever official book signing event.
Back from a short break, Hazel brought me an icy beer to quench my raging thirst from all that hard signing and talk, and one of the lovely Eargasm Chix thoughtfully brought both Kay and me a gourmet cookies to sustain us.
Once the signing was done and my energy was restored by alcohol and sugar, there was more exploring to do. Then it was time to watch Dita Von Teese. We watched the show from the mezzanine of the food court ensconced next to a lovely lady with a huge raven tattoo peeking up over the back of her silver corset.
After a day full of obstacles, eye-candy, book-signing, and sensory overload, we ended up back at the hotel talking writing and erotica over a bottle of Chilean red. The perfect end to the perfect day.
As I sit here in the quiet of my lounge, bleary-eyed from lack of sleep and still trying to take in the fullness of the day, I’m thinking about Hazel, who spent another long day today working the Xcite Booth at Erotica. Of course the way the books were flying off the racks, she may have run out of stock and had to close up shop early. Thanks, Hazel and Mirandas and Eargasm Chix for doing such a fabulous job! You all rock!
Be sure to catch Part two of Dr Dick’s interview with me on his fabulous series, The Erotic Mind. Dr Dick tells me that the first half of our our interview was a big hit, and tons of people downloaded to hear us talk about the creative process and healing the rift between sexuality and spirituality. If you missed it, tune in, catch up, and find out why so many people are having a listen.
As I look at the photo, I have to smile. Several years ago, I had the privilege of attending a martial arts camp in Poland with the fabulous poet, scholar, kick-ass martial-artist, and all around great bloke, Afaa Weaver. In the airport at Krackow waiting to catch our flights home, we checked out the book shelves in one of the shops, as writers do. He graciously listened to me go on and on about the novel I was writing. When I finally took time out to breathe, he ran a hand along a shelf of books and told me, half joking, that once your book appears in the airport shops, you’ve arrived. Mind you, Afaa is someone who arrived long before I even realized there was a journey to be made. But I am so there now! In W H Smiths. In Terminal Five. (See photographic evidence.)
Airports are always places in flux, places of comings and goings. Arrival is also departure to new destinations as well as coming home. Airports are places of beginnings and endings. The Initiation of Ms Holly is on the shelf, and The Pet Shop is in the making. I have arrived at the airport. Now the actually journey begins. I can hardly wait to see where it takes me. I’m sure Afaa would see the poetry in this arrival.