For most authors I guess book launches are a bit like Katie Price’s wedding… you will only ever have a few such days in your lifetime!
Although ─ like the zeppelin-breasted Price ─ I have had two formal launches before, as a rugby fan I was really looking forwards to unveiling my latest work, Terry Davies: Wales’s First Superstar Fullback, as it was to take place in the Phil Bennett lounge at Parc y Scarlets.
With Terry being a former Llanelli favourite it was a fitting place for the launch and it proved to be a great night, although, as I sipped a Gin and Tonic with Terry by the bar at 6.45pm, and gazed around an all but empty room, I was a bit concerned. However it turned out Kevin Costner was spot on when he said ‘Build it and they will come!’ (Field of Dreams) as by 7pm the room was fuller than it is on a match day.
Keeping with the wedding analogy you do feel a bit like the bridesmaid (but never the bride) when you write a biography and that person is still alive… because people are, quite obviously, more interested in them.
I did have one lady ask me to sign her book and tell me that I was awesome – thanks mum – but I was more than happy for Terry to take the limelight, after all, it was his remarkable talent that led to such an impressive rugby career without which there would be no book.
When he tried to thank me ─ for writing ‘such a great book’ ─ I told him that it was all down to him and all I had to do was leave the rude bits out! As you can imagine, being a rugby player, there are more than a few stories that proved too X-rated!
Another reason for the success of the evening was the presence of BBC Radio Wales’s version of Terry Wogan… Roy Noble.
Roy actually features in the book and being a friend of Terry’s agreed to say a few words… which turned out to be quite a few words but all were entertaining and made the event special.
I had the task of following Roy and took the opportunity to assure everyone that the book was still worth buying as there were other stories Roy hadn’t touched on!
Terry was next and when he handed the microphone back to me I announced the book also has some nice photographs!
My publisher, Y Lolfa, later said that they had sold over 150 books which is pretty good by any standards and goes to show that Terry Davies is still very much a star in his home town.
With several talks and book signings to come hopefully it will be a while before this honeymoon is over!