Emma Neale’s very lovely thank you speech at the launch of Billy Bird

Cover

So looking forward to this book – and to hearing Emma Neale at Going West and the Ladies Litera-Tea this year. Good to see Harriet Allen, one of our champions of New Zealand fiction, getting applauded. Here is a taste of Emma’s launch speech just posted on her blog.

…. although this is the bit about losing the launch speech – something we all blanche at the thought of …

 

Last night, my elbow must have hit an invisible delete button in the space-time continuum. I stapled and folded my launch speech, put it in my handbag, patted it to make sure it was in there safe and happy, and arrived at the University Book Store without my launch speech. Cue panic. Cue rushing back to the car, scrambling around to look under seats. No speech. And at home later that night: still no speech. It’s spooky. 

I had to extemporise, with my hands shaking, and I’m pretty sure I forgot something. So by way apology, I’m posting the original here. People who did attend can spot the difference! (The first one is that I forgot to say my quadra-lingual greeting.)

Tena koutou katoa, talofa lava, bonsoir, good evening, thank you so much for coming.

I’m very aware that it gets uncomfortable holding still and being quiet for a long time, especially if you are age six or under. Or maybe even if you’ve ever been six and under. My own six-year-old wrote to his headmaster recently to ask if he could incorporate exercises into assembly, because keeping still and quiet was very difficult if you have a busy mind and legs that tingle. So I wonder if, before I say all my thank yous, Zac would like to lead us all in a short game of Simon Says.

 

For the full speech go here

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