I have just returned from almost a full month in New Zealand where I held two very successful launches for Against The Current.
Why New Zealand? Simply because the country plays a big part in the book. It was from there that Liz and I sold up, quit our jobs, left family and friends and headed to France to buy a boat and begin our inland waterways adventure. It was from there in particular that we received huge support for what we were doing, along with emails of envy, and constant reminders that no matter how bad the weather or how frustrating our problems might have been with the boat, at least we didn't have to attend boring meetings!
So it seemed only fair to hold the two initial launches in Auckland and Wellington. I was warmly welcomed by the Richmond Yacht Club at Westhaven in Auckland and the Evans Bay Yacht and Motor Boat Club in Wellington, both of which were very enthusiastic in offering their venues for the launches.
At each, the audience comprised friends and unknown boating enthusiasts, and I engaged in many fascinating conversations. At each launch I introduced the back story to Against The Current, explaining how the whole adventure came about, and then read four or five passages from the book, with a wee bit of explanation in between. They were well-received. I then concluded with a few choice images, since there are none in the paperback. For those used to boating in New Zealand only, where there are no canals, these were of particular interest.
I don't have to tell you that more than a little wine was consumed by way of celebration, and I left with a satisfied feeling of achievement. But there is a lot of work yet to do, not least of which will be launching the book in the UK, multiple times in multiple venues.
Oh, and I'm going to record an audio version of the book, but more on that later!