Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Celebrating Kate!

One of the great joys of writing is the long hours holed up alone in the garret -- no, wait, that's not it.

One of the real great joys of writing is the people you meet when you are NOT holed up in the garret with the imaginary people who are helping you make your living.

They are fine, of course. And handsome, frequently. But generally not restful and easy to be with. They take managing (or don't take it, which is often worse).

No, the real joy is the real flesh-and-blood friends you make -- other writers often -- who make your world a richer, brighter, more colorful (or as some would say, colourful) place.

There have been quite a few such wonderful writers in my life -- and one of them is having a birthday today.

So, please join me in wishing a very happy birthday -- and many more -- to the warm, wonderful, witty (and ever so occasionally wild) Kate Walker.

Kate, as most of you know, has written a lot of books, given countless hours of reading pleasure to millions of people in languages she doesn't even speak --much less write in -- all over the world. She's also a terrific teacher of writing, as many wannabes and gonnabes know.

Actually there are now quite a few plain old "be"s whose books are on the shelves who owe much of their publishing success to Kate's wisdom, so they're pretty fond of her, too.

Those who are interested in learning from a pro should take a look at her new Kate Walker's 12 Point Guide to Writing Romance. You won't be sorry.

What can I say about Kate?

She's the person I would most like to trail around Grasmere with in a pouring rain while she's suffering and ill because she absolutely never complains. She's the one who will take dictation from a cat and send long missives (he's pretty wordy) to all his friends and fans without once thinking she has better things to do.

She will trudge through the back streets of beautiful downtown Millom looking for dead relatives' old houses (who aren't even her dead relatives) and act like she's having a perfectly good time.

She will track down and send any book or dvd or document that you think you might want/need/fancy no matter how obscure because that's the kind of friend she is.

She even -- and if this isn't real friendship, I don't know what is -- shared Hugh-in-a-towel with me for our Australia and New Zealand Romance Writers Convention jaunt. She actually let me bring him home afterwards (well, she said she had another, but that doesn't detract from the generosity of the act).

What more can you ask?

So here's to Kate -- a wonderful writer, a fabulous friend, a mother of cats, a champion of hedgehogs!

Happy birthday, dear Kate!


Donna Alward said...

Anne when I started reading I knew it had to be you posting.

I was one of those wannabe's that Kate encouraged. And since then we've become friends - finally meeting her in person last year was so lovely. She is the most wonderful person. Wonderful author, friend and my "writing mum".

Happy Birthday Kate.

Pat Cochran said...

Ms. Walker does sound like a really wonderful friend. We join you in wishing her a very "Happy Birthday!"

Pat Cochran

Kate Walker said...

Oh now I'm blushing. And smiling at some great memories ...

Grasmerre was - er WET - but it was worth it to see you enjoying it and Dove Cottage - and the badger that night.

And who am I to come between ACOSB and his Lady Across the Pond? Sid has his own inimitable style, as I'm sure you know

I enjoyed Millom - I really did. And hey hunting down DVDs and books is not a problem - it's a great excuse to go into bookshops - like I need one!

Hugh-in-a-towel well, let's just say that there I do acknowledge that I was generous - but I had to be seeing as you'd already stolen him!

And I'm going to shout a loud Hear! Hear! (or is that Here! Here!) on the subject of writer friends they definitely do make the world a richer place.

Kate (and Sid)

Estella said...

Sounds like your are 'true' friends.
Happy Birthday, Kate!

Jane said...

Happy Birthday, Kate.

Anna Campbell said...

Anne, what a lovely post. You could just feel the warmth and respect and affection that is at the basis of your wonderful friendship with Kate.

Kate, HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!!! Hope you have a fantastic day!

Anna x

Dina said...

Happy Birthday, Kate! :)

Anne McAllister said...

Donna, I'm so glad you are one of the "be"s who benefitted from Kate's wisdom. Hope I get to meet you, too, someday.

Pat, Estella, Jane and Dina, she is indeed a great friend and thank you for joining in the birthday wishes.

Anna, thanks for the kind words. Everything I've said about Kate's friendship is true. She is one of a kind.

Kate, hope you had a wonderful day!

Margaret McDonagh said...

Couldn't agree more, Anne. Kate is fab - and her 12 Point Guide was invaluable to me. Great news for anyone who wants to write romance that there is a second edition out now! It should be compulsory reading.

Hope you had a great birthday, Kate.

Mags xx