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Thanks for darker.

It has taken us a while to get the words together to write this post and the reason for that is that we have been soaking up all the Darkness! We’ve Just loved reading the blog posts, seeing the pictures and enjoying all the wonderful comments.

Thought we would start at the beginning and go back a year….

As I’m (Rachel) part of the Orchard book club I have been lucky enough over the years to have been blogging and interacting with so many great authors from all genres and in all stages of their writing careers; so with our notebooks at the ready Jo and I thought it would be just amazing to be able to put a signing together showcasing authors writing the darker side of fiction. At first the struggle to bring horror and crime authors out from behind the computer screen was hard, bit by bit we found ourselves with a totally wicked darker family of authors.

The run up was a real roller coaster and totally consumed our lives for over 12 months, the Darker Event was something different from other signings we have hosted and we loved every single minute of it!

We wanted the signing and the evening ball to have a really close and friendly feel, keeping it intimate and personal all the way through. The readers group was such a fun place to post in and all the members totally embraced all things dark, well except for clowns that is! By posting and promoting everyday, you guys joining us, plus adding the little touches, we think we achieved the effect we were striving for.

The night before the event myself and Jo went to the hotel to setup, the nerves were quite high and I don’t think we had eaten or slept for days, it was like planning a wedding for 40 brides and grooms lol. Once a few of the authors had started to arrive they were popping into the hall to say hello, hugs were exchanged and we started to relax into it all. When we had finished the hall, we popped into the bar for a well needed drink! It was lovely to see everyone chatting, comparing travel stories; the laughter was contagious. It was reluctantly that we slipped off home leaving all the fun and wine behind, we needed to do some final checks and get some beauty sleep! (at least until the 5am alarm went off!)

Jo and I are big on lists, ( mostly Jo) we had ticked all the boxes and just knew we had it all covered, even down to the finest detail; it was just the butterflies that were going wild! We had arranged a meet and greet coffee for all the authors to chat and fill up on caffeine plus it gave us a few minutes to compose ourselves before the rest of our guests arrived.

We knew it would run smoothly and we had the makings of a great event. With the help of our terrific friends, amazing authors, assistants and of course the fabulous guests that came, the day went seamlessly. What we hadn’t imagined was the way everyone would embrace the day, the tables and banners looked fantastic and gave the room a fabulous feel to it. Our Horror model ladies certainly stayed in character the whole time! 9.55am arrived and we both left the room with our ticket guest list, wrist bands and scanner at the ready (those butterflies were still doing loops). The buzz of excitement from the fans was awesome, everyone chatting whilst they waited the last few minutes for the main doors to open.

From start to finish the mood was immense, full of laughter. Every single author was just so lovely and friendly, everyone that attended seemed to be full of smiles; so we felt pretty pleased with ourselves 🙂

A quick bite to eat and before we knew it the afternoon got into full swing, streams of fans walked round the hall. Looking for their favourite authors and discovering new ones to chat to. There were so many little moments that touched us, the hugs from people we had chatted to online to, then being grabbed for pictures.
The view was a hall full of amazing people, banners, laughing and camera flashes….. we were overwhelmed and cried happy tears.

Then a super quick turn around in the hall to transform it into the evening ball, again the finer details took time to set up and we literally threw on our ball dresses lol! The effect was just what we wanted even though we were not allowed the smoke machine or the clowns lol. The magian was terrific, the food was delicious the DJ was a bit old school but the company was epic! We danced and drank the rest of the night away ~ well until the bar closed! We gave our last hugs and said goodnight to everyone before collecting up the few mementos and table decorations that were left behind.

Too high on emotion for the night to end we slipped off to the residents bar, chatting and recounting some of the details that had made us laugh or caught our eye throughout the night.

There are so many people to thank for all the support, help and encouragement from start to finish we have been truly lucky to have had you all with us. We have to mention Krista Webster and Len, Paula and Clare our Hourglass team at darker did a brilliant job of making it all run smoothly. Have to thank Jodie from Swag Squad for doing the Darker merchandise . Not to forget our families for putting up with the constant late night meetings and darker talk! We would also like to thank the authors that believed in us and the authors that took a chance on us; we really appreciate that you chose to sign with us. Victoria,Claire and Charlie you ladies are awesome, thank you for the pep talks, your energy and smiles are infectious!

Thank you to everyone who came to Darker, without you all it would have been just an empty hall, you guys made this event! So thank you all 🙂

Lots of love
Rachel and Jo

xx

 

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https://flipagram.com/f/1Gn9FbHtPWa

 

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.•´*¨`*•✿ LEEDS ANNOUNCEMENT ❥¸.•´*¨`*•✿

¸.•´*¨`*•✿ LEEDS ANNOUNCEMENT ❥¸.•´*¨`*•✿

We would like to welcome KA Hobbs to the Leeds signing!

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KA Hobbs is the author of Doubt. Loves to read and lose herself in a good book. Enjoys good coffee and champagne. Loves to go swimming and travelling.

KA Hobbs lives with her husband in Essex. When she isn’t lost in a book or creating one, she loves to cook, swim and shop. Her happiest times are always when she is surrounded by family and friends. She is a little obsessed with the Tudors and would love to go back to that period in time.

One day, while watching TV, a scene came to her, completely out of the blue. She could see the scene unfolding, could picture the characters so clearly. She couldn’t get to her laptop quick enough and spent hours writing not only that scene, but lots of others too.

She will happily admit to being grumpy when she doesn’t get to write, she loves her characters and spending time listening to what they have to say. KA Hobbs is currently working on other books in The Connected Series.

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You can find her  here….

Facebook ~ https://www.facebook.com/KAHobbsAuthor/timeline

http://authorkahobbs.com

We are super excited she will be signing in Leeds and sure you will all give her a warm welcome x

Come and meet and our 60 fabulous authors signing at Leeds, its going to be a day and night to remember 🙂

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https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/leeds-author-event-2016-tickets-15537433883

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TOUR DA ENGLAND CHARITY BIKE RIDE

Eric's poster

2015 is going to be a big year for many people.

You may be getting married, having a baby, buying a house or following a dream.

For Eric Fulham and Hannah Dawson 2015 is the year they embark on a 200 mile bike ride to raise important funds for the charity CLIC Sargent.

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CLIC Sargent (Cancer and Leukaemia in Childhood) help young people and their families deal with the magnitude of issues presented when a young person is diagnosed with Cancer or Leukaemia. They are guided by four key aims
  • To reduce the practical and financial impact of cancer treatment on a child, or young person, and their family
  • To support the emotional wellbeing and resilience of children, young people and their families
  • To maximise the time that children and young people can spend safely at home during treatment
  • To maximise children and young people’s potential by enabling them to access education, training and employment opportunities.
Everything you need to know about this wonderful charity can be found here on their website
Eric and Hannah work for J D Wetherspoon who have been supporting CLIC since 2002. Over the past 13 years they have raised 10 million pounds for the charity, have recently pledged to keep supporting them for a further 5 years and aim to raise 1 million pounds a year for them.
You can read the company’s celebration of reaching this milestone here
JD Wetherspoons have bars all over the UK, Eric and Hannah work in The Squire Knott in Oldham just outside of Manchester. After knowing each other for only a year they have decided to undertake this monumental challenge to raise money for the very worthy cause.
I spoke to them both to see how they are feeling about this upcoming grueling task they have set themselves.
Eric & Hannah
1) What made you guys want to cycle from Manchester to London?
Stupidity! No seriously, we wanted to do something big to help. Head office is in Watford and we thought it would be a great idea to go from our front door to theirs.
2) What sort of things have your pub done in the past to raise money for CLIC?
We’ve done raffles, football cards, none uniform days and fancy dress days. We’ve taken part in Kick for CLIC which is a five-a-side football tournament held by Weatherspoons as well as a charity darts competition held by the company too.
3) You say you want to cover the 200 mile distance in three days, what made you choose this time frame?
Neither of us are athletes so we wanted to give ourselves enough time to make people impressed and want to sponsor us without actually dying at the end of it.
4) How’s the training going?
We won’t lie, it’s hard, but we are being sensible about it and increasing our intensity gradually in order to build up strength and stamina. We’ve also had one of our customers donate 2 bike helmets and 100 glucose gel packs to help out too.
 
Eric and Hannah embark on their Tour Da England on the 18th of July; their Just Giving page can be found here
The North are heading South and they need you to CLIC and support.
It’s not only money they are currently trying to raise, if you own or work for a sports shop/company and think you could help by donating some of the equipment they will need on their journey, please get in touch with Eric by the following email address ericfulham@gmail.com
Thank you for taking the time to read this blog post; you can keep up with Eric and Hannah’s training and their quest on their Facebook Page. To quote a well known supermarket “Every penny helps” and Eric and Hannah are after pennies to raise pounds.
Lisa Fulham who has organized this blog tour is still looking for sign-ups for June and July, if you have a blog or Facebook page you would like to support this cause with please fill in the sign-up sheet

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