Burlesque – more fun than sex?

Well no, not exactly, but definitely a lot of fun. I’ve never read as Carmel before and probably never will again, but this was the best of good causes: Burlesque Against Breast Cancer, with all the proceeds going to charity. The anthology is Ultimate Burlesque if the comments below make you want to invest in a copy – and why not

Of course I was stupidly nervous (wouldn’t you have been, dear reader?) which is standard procedure for me when reading. I only threw up four times before the event, which is an improvement, and didn’t get a migraine until afterwards, which is a definite forward step. I am still unable to understand why I get so nervous – mind you, Jessica Lange still has such bad first night nerves that she describes them as ‘absolute dread’, so perhaps I should just remember I’m in good company. And when I get there, I love what I’m doing. Always and ever I’m a bit overwhelmed that people pay good money to hear me, and console myself with the thought that there are other readers who are definitely value for money on the bill. On Thursday it was Emily Dubberly who read a full-on sex story and Kristina Lloyd who read the first half of a surreal sex romp set in an administratively hide-bound circus – believe me, Kristina’s story alone is worth the anthology purchase price.

And I read a bit of The Price of Freedom a story set on Victory in Japan Day 1945. I got two laughs, which made me happy, as they were in the right places, and I didn’t drop anything, dry up, throw up or walk out. In fact I was euphoric after the reading and had I not had to walk back to the car in ridiculously high heels, which gave me bleeding toes, I’d still be walking on clouds now.

Many thanks to all who came along, it was lovely to see so many faces I already knew, and I hope you enjoyed yourselves. In the picture you can see, left to right: the back of my head with new ultra-short haircut and those insane heels, Emily Dubberly in the centre and Kristina Lloyd on the right.


  1. kristina lloyd
    1st November 2008

    Jeepers, I had no idea you were so nervous. You oozed cool and confidence.

    Thank you for such wonderful words on my story. And thanks for posting the pic (um, I think!).

  2. Anonymous
    8th November 2008

    I came to your book reading and thought you and your story were brilliant.

    In fact, I found this wonderful blog by browsing for your writing courses.

  3. Kay Sexton
    10th November 2008

    Kristina – we were a bunch of talent and no mistake.

    Anon, whoever you are, I love you! I shall be teaching in February in Brighton and don’t worry, I won’t be shy about posting up the details.


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