Thursday, 13 August 2009

Black Lace Wake

Dear Friends of the Departed...

Last week a Wake was held for Black Lace (1993-2009) and Nexus (1988-2009), in the heart of London's glamorous West End. Okay, so it wasn't glamorous - we were in the upstairs room of a pub - but it was fun and it was wonderful to see some old (and new) faces, though for probably the last time.

Of course, having authors scattered across the world, only a small percentage could attend. Cleo Cordell and Bitchy Jones were there. So were Ashling Morgan and Penny Birch.

Below, L to R: Karen S Smith, Olivia Knight, editor Adam Nevill, Primula Bond, Kristina Lloyd, Mathilde Madden. They're all wondering how I can cope with my new camera, seeing as how I am a card-carrying luddite.

Here's Simon Lee-Price, one of our assistant editors. He had a wee rant about the publishing biz which, alas, I cannot repeat:

Here's Kerri Sharp, the original Black Lace Editor and the woman to whom I owe my writing career, giving the eulogy:

Adam looks shocked!

Want to hear a funny story? I only found this out myself on that night: A young female relative of a certain multi-millionaire not totally unconnected with the Virgin brand (who owned Black Lace at the time) was seconded to Black Lace for work experience. She was given a fiction manuscript to read. She quit the job in horror on her first day, saying she was being "asked to read things she wasn't comfortable with." The book? My novella Bear Skin in Enchanted. Yes, I drove someone out of a job!

Kerri and Adam nearly wet themselves laughing...


Justine Elyot said...

Janine, you have just made me ROAR! How very funny! Thanks for posting these - I was especially interested to see a pic of Mr Lee-Price, who is to blame for 'discovering' me initially. Looks like a whale of a time was had by all (or should that be a wail of a time?).

neve black said...

You're a hoot. You little heathen, you...hahaha. What a great story. Thank you so much for sharing the party and the pictures with us. A pub filled with erotic writers? Sounds like a blast to me.

Onward and upward from here! :-)

Janine Ashbless said...

Simon's a sound guy, Justine: good on him for discovering you. He has roughed-up nicely since his BL days (Am I allowed to say that? It was Kristina's phrase, I swear!) and he's now lecturing, I believe.

Hell, they were all exceptionally nice, dedicated people in the BL office. Donna (the other sub-editor) was there too but my photo of her didn't come out - she's still in publishing elsewhere but remembers us fondly.

Onward and upward!

Lucy Felthouse said...

Looks fun, wish I could have been there :((

Dayle A. Dermatis said...

Sigh. I wish I could have been there, too!

Janine, do you have an e-mail address for Adam? He asked me to keep in touch--and, if fact, started a conversation in his last message to me--but all I have his is former Virgin address! (Feel free to e-mail me at cyvarwydd AT mac DOT com.)

Thanks! :-)

Janine Ashbless said...

Oh, I wish everyone could have been there. *sigh*
His address is on its way, Dayle.

Saskia Walker said...

LOL! That's such a great story. One to retell over and over. :) Great photos, thanks for sharing. So lovely to see Kerri again too. I miss her. She was a real mentor to me at the time I needed it most.

Cora Zane said...

I'm still sad about Black Lace, but this looks like the best send off ever. How lucky all of you are to have been able to see each other like this. And what an awesome discover about Bear Skin! ^_^

Thanks so much for sharing!

Nikki Magennis said...

Thanks so much for posting pics so we can vicariously pretend we was there, Janine! Looks like a grand party.

I went in Glasgow Borders yesterday and BL/Nexus titles take up fully 2 thirds of the new shiny erotica section - now housed alongside all the other fiction like a proper genre, rather than tucked away inbetween 'military history' and the gents. Pah.