After Publication Aug 29th to Sept 14th.

DAY 1  August 29th Thursday  Publication day.

I wake  at The Malmaison in Piccadilly Manchester and  send out my morning rhyme with accompanying photograph as I do every morning.

I publish light said the sky
And books light the way
I hope my name is why
Will find the light of day

And so the day of publication  begins

at 7.30am it starts with BBC  Breakfast Television.

Then there’s a series of of local and national radio interviews.  This photo is with  broadcast radio legend Becky Want.

all in my beloved Manchester at media city in Salford

The  day ends in a moving conversation on Granada Reports with another Broadcast TV News legend:  Lucy Meacock

DAY 2 Friday August 30th London Jo Good. In the middle of the interview I broke down.

My Name Is Why has been  published for less than  24 hours and there is a definite reaction from people I don’t know.

DAY 3 Saturday August 31st  Tonight’s my Ethiopian Book launch  in Bethnal Green.

I apologise about my impassioned rant on some of the bad practise in adoption.  There is good practise and bad. We must root out the bad and celebrate the good.  But the event was beautiful and thank you Selam Amare the organiser on stage with me here.

There is something special about my Ethiopians.

There’s been various articles in the press but I am particularly proud of this.

DAY 4. Sunday September  1st .  A day off.  I’m hanging out  with my friend Subrina Kidd in East London.   We laugh as always.

Dotun Adebayo asked me onto his show at 7.30pm.  It was electric. The woman to my right is an inspiring foster mother.

DAY 5 Monday September 2nd   all interviews from  Wogan House  at The BBC.  Here I am with Dominic King of BBC radio Kent. I love his arts show and remember it well from my time as  Canterbury Writer in Residence.

And who should I bump into outside the studio but Elif Shafak                                        DAY 6 Tuesday September 3rd  is The Royal Court Theatre. This is home.                  This is the place which accepted The Report and me with open arms. Radical Vulnerability. I am interviewed on stage by  Miranda Sawyer and she is brilliant .  

The event ends like this .  It fills my heart.

And then there’s book signing. 

I race to Euston station for the 10.30pm to Birmingham. Arrive at hotel du vin  for  1.30am.

DAY 7 Wednesday  September 4th.  I wake at 7am to the news that my book is

I catch an Uber  to West Bromwich Football ground for 10am

where  a crowd of foster cares await and I give  the Keynote Address of my life

and then catch the train straight back to London.

It’s  The Foyles Bookshop Launch on Charing Cross Road. As I walk in this  incredible artwork of My Name Is Why comes into vision on the glass staircase.  It’s the idea of Mark Davy.

Backstage up on 6th floor there’s a drinks thing. These are the people who made my book happen. Behind me are Francis Bickmore the editor and Clare Conville the agent.

And This is Emma Draude of Emma Draude PR.

And Joanna Trollope! The event sold out.  I am a bit hyper. It must be  tiredness. Alex Clark held it all together.

One of the beautiful tings about events is when you’re friends come.

And then there is the pure joy of meeting generations of my people 

And the younger generations looking  happy

And the book signing lasted.  My book is catching the people. I would never have known.

And the Book signing photos.

I haven’t eaten so two great women take me for a meal. One of them is my dear friend LInda Lines and the other is Joanna Trollope.

 DAY 10 Saturday  September 7th 6am awake and  arrive  at The imperial War Museum 9.30am to take part in a symposium:  Culture Under Attack.  These planes are real.

I arrive to  hear Elif Shafak speak at #Cultureunderattack.

And then I’m on the panel 

Straight after the symposium I race to Euston train station to Manchester where I’m on stage with  Julie Hesmondhalgh. Julie is an extraordinary woman.  We have an intense discussion on stage. The audience love it. This is my favourite photo of the whole tour.

Julie  took this photo below. The event was a sell out!  
i signed books afterwards and then walked back to my hotel with friends.
DAY 11 Sunday 8th September is taken up with BBC interviews starting off with a cracker on BBC Radio 2 Good morning.
Sunday is also the official announcement of this news frmo earlier in the week. 
Day 12th Monday  9th September   It was a genuine honour to be requested by The University of Manchester President Dame Nancy Rothwell to speak at the dinner for the Global University Engagement Summit #gues19
From left Professor Nalin Thakkar, Mayor Abid Latif Chohan Vice Pres. R.B. Douglas of Chicago University.
DAY 13 Tuesday September 10th.  I arrive back in London straight to Goldsmith College to celebrate the Memorial of Professor Perlita Harris.
 It was a joy to speak t  friends and family and for Chris and to see professor Deidre Osborne.

On the way to New Cross  station I bump into poet and publisher Nii Parkes and we talk on the street  corner . I like it when that happens.  Home 11.30pm.

DAY 14 Wednesday  September 11th.  It’s Ethiopian new Years Eve. No better time to bump into the super ace face of  Anita Rani . 

Tomorrow The Two Shot Podcast goes live.  I love this podcast. We recorded it earlier this week in Manchester. That shot is in the malmaison. He turns stuff around! Please listen . 

I catch a train from London paddington to Oxford and Check in at Oxford Prison which is now a Malmaison Hotel. The event has sold out.  Basically this is my life. Road Bridge bag.

This is the hotel. Loves it.

I bereak out and dash over to Blackwells in Oxford. This is the  dressing room

The event totally sold out

The book signing was beautiful. A  woman breathing through a machine told me she was waiting for a lung transplant. She signed out of hospital to visit me. This is Mehret.  This is my favourite shot with My name Is Why.

DAY 15  Thursday September 12th  I leave the prison  at 5.30am for London.

I start filming at 9am. I’m prividing links for  a selection of great short films by new generation artists using spoken word for inspiration.

We are filming in a place called Dalston Hieghts.

And it is an absolutely brilliant.  I mean their work is brilliant. I am just the presenter!  The films which I am introducing as presenter are from a new generation of brilliance.

The programme is called Rhyme and Reason b broadcast on Sunday 29th on BBC 4. I finish at 2pm and pop home then get a taxi to do an event called House On Fire with Deborah Frances White crreator of  The Guilty Feminist.
It is Ethiopian New Years Day and the audience is peppered with Ethiopians. This makes me proud. The book signing stretches into the night

ANd more photogaphs from some beautiful people

and more

DAY 16  Friday  September 13th wake at 6am to travel to Belfast.  I stay at The Bullit Hotel and drop and head straight to The BBC

And  then straight to the Black Box  also in Cathedral Quarter.The event has sold out.  Friday Night in Belfast.

DAY 17  Saturday  Septermber 14th I  fly back to London. The plane circled The Shard.. How can a country so beautiful be so utterly disturbed.

There are a few newspaper articles in the  papers

I train Straight to Kings Cross station on to Halifax. Yorkshire is beautiful.

I arrive in Halifax. The event has sold out in The Square Chapel. It is great to meet The Two Michelles from Huddersfield Literature Festival .

Then there is a booksigning. I appreciate this.

And that’s it. Seventeen days. There is much more than I’ve shown you.  But this is a taster of my life in the middle of the book launch period which is catapulting towards Christmas. My next blog will be about The Christmas Dinners cause now is the time to talk about the wonderfulness that is The Christmas Dinners.


26 thoughts on “After Publication Aug 29th to Sept 14th.

  1. Your book arrived on Monday, by Tuesday my husband had read it as he co7ldnt put it down, it’s now my turn and I know I won’t be disappointed, I am so very glad you now have the acclaim you deserve, you have tried so very hard to achieve everything you have done.
    Do you still do your early morning uplifts I so miss them

  2. Guess who just out bid Sal OBE for your book at the Dinner for the Dinner in Leeds! ‍♀️‍♀️
    So that’s only two copies I have …..

  3. Glad I got to personally give YOU a special book for a change, all about Quilters, and why we do it, when you visited Oxford.

    As a volunteer “Quilter for Care Leavers”, I am so happy you saw & got a hug from just one of the many hundreds of quilts being made by volunteers, all working together in teams, to finish just one unique hug, and as many unique hugs as we can for this year’s Christmas Dinners.

  4. Just noticed our St. Christophers carers keynote talk made the blogg, thought and practice changing.

    Looking forward to seeing you again tonight at the MAC.

    Would love to support Christmas Dinners in any way you need.

  5. Hi Lemn Wow what a great achievement! Congrats . You never cease to amaze me and your fans. I read your book over the weekend. I couldn’t put it down. Your story is so moving and inspirational. Thank you

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