Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Looking back - Kate Walker gets nostalgic

Today I made a trip into town where – amongst other things  - I made a visit to our local library.   I don ‘t visit there very often these days, but today I had a special reason for going.
(I’ll come to that later).

It’s always rather strange walking through the main door of the library. You see, years ago, I used to work there. I was the children’s librarian, first of all for the small branches in the local villages and then after a  couple of years I was in charge of the main central library in the town. I loved that job – I got to  select and buy  lots of wonderful books and get them on the shelves,  meet   with children of all ages and help them find books they would enjoy. I used to love  running the library clubs and special book quizzes – and it was always  such a pleasure to know that I was helping children with their reading and encouraging them to read more.

Since I left, the library has changed a lot. The children’s library has been moved  several times, once  going from the ground floor  to the second floor, and  becoming smaller  after cutbacks. But now it’s back where it was when I ran it, on the ground floor, with lots of shelves filled with wonderful books – even a couple of comfortable easy chairs and settees – those weren’t there when I ran the place (unfortunately!)

So I had a nostalgic moment thinking about the job I used to have and how the library was the place I came to every day of the week. Then I remembered why I was in the library at all, and that reminded me of just how my life has changed and how very different my job is now.

I was in the library to donate some of my books – the library takes many of my international editions, so I was there with a box full of Japanese, French,  Italian, Brazilian,  Dutch and Czech editions, together with some large print editions that the library can really use.  This reminded me of how, 30 years ago this month, I was waiting for another parcel of books – the very first parcel of many – the very first set of my author’s copies of my first book. That book, The Chalk Line, was first published in the UK, in hardback only, in December 1984.

30 years ago! It doesn’t seem possible – and yet there are all those foreign editions to prove how different things are now from then. The Chalk Line  didn’t appear in foreign editions for some time. The German edition  was the very first translation I ever saw. And now I have 63 titles published, and I’m hard at work on my 64th.  So many of the children I helped to find the books to enjoy have gro
wn up in that time, they have their own children – I sometimes see them with their kids in the Children’s library now,.

So next month I’ll be celebrating the 30th anniversary of my very first book being published. It’s been a complete change in the way I thought my life would go, I have a totally different  job to work at, shelves of published editions of my books – and so many friends all over the world,. Both writers and readers, to show as a result.   It’s all been so much more exciting and rewarding than I could ever imagined.

So what about you? Where were you and what were you doing  30 years ago ? Were you even
alive then – eek! That’s a question that scares me!

Has your life changed as much in the past 30 years? Did you expect to be where you are today, back then?

I know I didn’t.

You can look for Kate's 12 Point Guide To Writing Romance which is now selling busily on Kindle.

In fiction, she has the reprint of Kept for Her Baby out in the current By Request 3 in 1. Coming soon is a reprint of The Konstantos Marriage Demand  in His Revenge Seduction another 3 in 1.

You can find all her news on her website, and  all the must up to date events on her blog.


dstoutholcomb said...

30 years ago, I was a high school senior! making plans for college, school dance (Belle's Ball right after Christmas, and I had a Gunne Sax dress--very important back then), and wondering if my p/t job would pay for college (it did!!!) So many dreams--life didn't quite turn out the way I expected, but I love the life I have.


Mary Preston said...

Time flies. 30 years ago I was fairly newly married with a one year old son.

Kate Walker said...

Thanks for telling me your story, Denise - that's a lovely memory. We all have such dreams, but it's fascinating how life can take us on a different path. I'm so pleased that you loved the life you have - I hope it continues that way.

Kate Walker said...

Hi Mary - time does fly doesn't it? I hope that one year old son is now a happy and healthy man - he'd just be the perfect age to be one of my heroes!

Anonymous said...

Hi Kate and congratulations on 30 fabulous years and all those fabulous books! I love that you can go back to where you were then, and see the library from the other side of reading.

Thirty years ago I was working in Canberra and I'd met *the* one, though we were still some years off from marriage and family (and rediscovering my one time wish of being an author.) Funny how life doesn't always move in straight lines but circles :)