This was the view from my hotel room:
I haven’t been to Brisbane for over twenty years, when I bussed through on the way to Expo88. So everything was shiny and new to me. The city was bigger than I remembered, not surpisingly, and very cosmopolitan. And not as hot as I’d expected. It was humid, but not the searing 40-45 degrees (Celcius – that’s 105-112 degrees Fahrenheit) I returned to in Melbourne.
The first bookshop Adèle, my Orbit guide, took me to was Angus & Robertson in Morayfield, where I signed stock for the lovely Lyn and Terry.
I’d woken up in the middle of the night with a frozen shoulder, possibly due to the hotel bed, and was in some pain so Lyn suggested I try the Chinese masseur nearby. Half an hour later, after the ‘cups’ treatment I somehow managed to order without realising it, I looked like this:
But I felt much better! We headed for Chermside, where at Dymocks I talked football with Byron and signed more books for Sue.
And then we visited Mega Books, a newsagency with a big book section at Toombul, where I signed lots of books – in two displays!
And a savvy shopper, Elsa, took advantage of having a real, live author on hand to get a present for her daughter and granddaughter.
With Elsa (photo thanks to Adèle Fewster)
A late but very delicious lunch at Riverside books followed. Good food, good books, great company. I wish I had a shop like this near me!
Sampling the product
Adèle, wearing amazing shoes that gave me a serious case of boot-envy.
Next stop was Dymocks Indooroopilly, and the lovely Jo Ann.
With Jo Ann
Then Dymocks Brisbane City, where the store was closed for stock take, but as we arrived we encountered a reader who was trying to see the price of my book, and invited her in. She looked completely disbelieving at first when Adèle told her who I was! I signed a book for her and the shop put it aside for her to return and buy the next day.
With Sam – I hope you enjoyed the book!
With Pam & Jon and lots of signed books
Finally, we popped into Pulp Fiction, where I gossiped with Ron Serdiuk and signed yet more books.
After a short rest at the hotel, Adèle took me to La Belle Epoque French Restaurant in Fortitude Valley, where I enjoyed a delicious meal with her, Matt Hoy from Orbit, Ron (Pulp Fiction), Chris (Coaldrakes Books), Emily (Riverbend Books, Rosy (Dymocks Indooroopilly), and Krissy (a reader and writer). We talked (and gossiped) about books, films, publishing and had a very fun and at time hilarious night.
Matt, Rosy, Chris, Ron, Emily, me, Krissy (photo thanks to Adèle Fewster)
All in all, a very enjoyable book tour – and all due to some very lovely, fun, book-loving people. Thankyou to all the booksellers, and to Adèle for being the perfect tour guide. I had a wonderful trip and can’t wait for the next one.