No, the verb is “cook up”, not the other thing. Although my choice of vocabulary may be revealing. The problem is – I’m in this Alone. My husband refers to it as “your launch”, which makes me feel like the QEII in drydock. Don’t get me wrong – I’ve organized lots of parties over the years: children’s parties. I have the cake photos to prove it. Can’t remember baking them – or even which birthday they celebrated. But never, EVER an adult party. Not even when we got married. Like Eva Peron, you could have knocked me down with a feather when my husband-to-be proposed, if I hadn’t been in bed at the time. There was no time to plan a party. We were too busy finding a registry office that had an opening before the end of the tax year. Ended up going hundreds of miles to the back of beyond. Our witness was a clerk at the magistrate’s court, and we spent the night at a dubious motel just outside the gambling Mecca of Sun City. Oddly enough, over the years, that motel has acquired something of a reputation for wedding receptions – no thanks to us. At the time, our only companion in the dining room was a cockroach, slowly climbing up the wall.
Back to “the” party. As you can see, we have a lot of celebrating to catch up on. And, after all, this is the greenest launch ever — the closest thing to a book will be the menu, because the shipping costs (another nasty nautical image) are almost double the price on the jacket. I’ve settled the menu, more-or-less. (Do you think we need a CAKE? I could possibly stretch to a Titanic, stern uppermost, on a sea of blue icing.) My favourite guitar duo, CH2, are coming to play. (See pic.) I’d happily park my broomstick behind their door any day. They have an album called “It’s about time”, which seemed appropriate. Guests? No, I haven’t forgotten! I’ve picked kind-of-adopted family; people who’ve invited us to their special events over the years, been “there” for us, or nudged some self-respect (ie work) my way. That’s about the sum of it. But I’m still jittery.
What can I “do” to make it a success? The dress code is jeans or tiara – I’m not specifying. I said no speeches, but if I can’t avoid it – anyone know any publishing jokes? And, should I have a poster showing the cover of the book and the publisher’s website? Or flyers? Saying what, I wonder. Or should I just confine myself to pouring welcome drinks and wine (nothing dry about this boat). If I provide all the ingredients (quick check) will the magic just happen, as it does with a play? You fret yourself to a frazzle and then to your amazement it all comes together on the night. To return to my cake metaphor – is the best I can do “Mix well” and hope for the best? No more ocean liner metaphors for me; if I do bake a cake it will be a great big, swash-buckling, flop-proof treasure island with a Jolly Roger on top.