So, Not So Perfect has been out for almost a whole month and most of the on-line promotion has been done (you can see, if you want to, a full list of all the reviews and interviews here). There is, as ever, plenty more to be done, but it feels like I can kind of take a few moments to reflect on things. So I will. (Because I’ve hit a wall with what I’m working on.)

What’s struck me the most is how different it’s been to promoting my first book. I loved it, loved having a book out and loved taking the Roaming Roman Book Tour on the road to schools and libraries. It was a terrific amount of fun, if not exhausting.

And I’d expected it to be something similar with Not So Perfect. But it’s not been. I’m not sure why, but it has been different. Maybe it’s because this is for grown-ups. Maybe it’s because it’s a different genre. Maybe it’s because I’ve changed (it is four years later). It might even be because I’m more comfortable with short stories. I don’t know.

What I DO know is how overwhelmed I’ve been with people’s response to Not So Perfect. As with any piece of writing I’ve ever produced, no matter how happy with it and proud of it I am, there’s a heavy fear that no-one will like it, and I suppose that’s even more evident when it’s a book. Because if people don’t buy it then, well, it’s failed. Or if some do and end up hating it… Yes. Bad times, as they say.

But people have bought it. And they have liked it. Mostly, people have got it. And I can’t tell you how happy and proud (and, ahem, a little emotional) that makes me (and reminds me, if I ever needed to be reminded, why I wanted Roast Books to publish me). I’m not sure there’s a better feeling.

So to everyone who’s bought it, to everyone who’s posted reviews of it and to everyone who’s got in touch to tell me they like it or to ask for an interview, and to all who’ve been a part of my blog tour and come to the events I’ve done: THANK YOU. Really, thanks. (Now, this doesn’t mean you need to stop of course – spreading the word helps a book an awful lot. Just saying…)

I also want to mention here the utterly wonderful and supportive friends who’ve been there, behind the scenes, helping. Sometimes with advice, sometimes to make me laugh and sometimes to listen to me moan and tell me that, actually, it’s not that bad or that, yes, I was right to be upset by this, that or the other.

So: Caz, Jo, Annie, Megan & Si, Cally, Jenn, Carol-Ann, Nicola, Gary, Tom & Ann and Mal – thank you for going that extra mile (or in Gary’s case, over a hundred and fifty, after work, on a Thursday evening!); there have been some wobbly moments and you’ve all been fab and understanding (of me, for goodness sake – that can’t have been easy!). And thanks to my other friends too, of course – you know who you are.

There. I’m glad I’ve said that. I’d be a bit of a fraud if I gave the impression that it was all me – that I’d done it all by myself – and I wouldn’t like to do that. People need people, and I’m no different. (I very much hope I’ve not missed anyone out by the way. If I have I am very, very sorry.)

Right. Back to work.