It’s a wonderful feeling to hold your own book in your hands for the first time. Something every writer dreams of. And today I got that pleasure when my advance copy of Slow Train to Switzerland arrived in the post. After almost three years of research, travel, writing and re-writing, the finished product finally exists in physical form. And it’s beautiful, but then I’m as biased as any new parent.
Books are often referred to as writers’ babies, although in this case the gestation period was far longer than any mammal on earth. But they are in fact the reverse of a baby. I’ve put in all the hard work and now comes the fun part, whereas babies begin with the fun part and then all the hard work comes once they are born.
But of course just having a book doesn’t mean it’s going to sell. There’s still a lot for me to do in the next few months: interviews, book signings and readings, answering emails and all the time wondering what people think of my creation. Writers spend months labouring over every word and then send their ‘baby’ off into the outside world without knowing who will read it and what they will think. It’s definitely a strange profession.
Slow Train to Switzerland will be in the shops in about a month’s time, which gives me the perfect opportunity to take a holiday before the whirlwind of promotion starts. You can already pre-order it online (various options including Amazon listed here) or at your favourite local bookshop, and if you want to get a signed copy, the public events coming up are listed below.
My family of books is getting larger. Three now in English, or five if you include the German and French translations of Swiss Watching. Definitely time to sit back and take a break. See you next month.
Slow Train to Switzerland events. Please contact the bookshops concerned for more details and/or tickets:
- 12 November, reading at Waterstone’s, Peterborough
- 14 November, reading at One Tree Books, Petersfield
- 18 November, reading at Waterstone’s, York
- 25 November, reading in Nyon (more details to come)
- 27 November, reading at Stauffacher, Bern
- 2 December, reading at Thalia, Basel
- 8 December, signing at Orell Füssli English Bookshop, Zurich
- 14 December, signing at BooksBooksBooks, Lausanne
There will also be a launch party on the evening of Wednesday 13 November at Daunts Marylebone in central London. If you would like to come to that, then there are some free tickets available so just email Ruth Killick, who is organising the event. First come, first served!