Natasha Oakley - British Romance Author

Writer of tug-at-the-heartstrings, feel-good romance for Harlequin Mills & Boon

Friday, May 02, 2008

2008 Year of Reading

Guess what I'm going to be up to this year? As if the title of this post wasn't a clue. I'm now Bedfordshire's 'Writer in Residence'.

It's all part of the UK's Year of Reading. It's a government backed initiative to promote a love of reading. Setting aside the fact I earn my living writing books, as a mum of five this is something I really want to be involved in. The hope is that the campaign will reach people who don't consider themselves 'readers'. The slogan is 'Reading - Anytime, Anything, Anywhere'. I'm all for taking the snobbishness out of books. It should be fun!

NYR was formally launched on 1st April. If you're in the UK you will be seeing a fair bit of this advert.

Spot the Harlequin Mills & Boon? To save you much peering I can tell you it's a 'Modern Heat' - 'Public Scandal, Private Mistress' by Susan Napier.

As part of the National Year of Reading, a scheme has been set up to link authors and libraries together. Each of the 149 participating library authorities now has a 'writer in residence' and I've been chosen as Bedfordshire's. 9 of the 149 authors selected are published by Harlequin Mills & Boon. The other 8 being:
Michelle Styles - Northumberland
Louise Allen - Peterborough
Susan Stephens - Kirklees
Kate Hardy - Norfolk
Nicola Cornick - Wiltshire
Sharon Kendrick - Hampshire
Caroline Anderson - Suffolk
India Grey - Cheshire.

I have no doubt I'll be telling you lots more about all this as the year goes on. It would be kind of fun if a 'writer in residence' actually had a go at writing in residence, wouldn't it? I can tell you now I'm not doing it unless I can have a flask of coffee by my left elbow at all times. Addiction is a terrible thing.

And here's a glimpse of how the advert was made.

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  • At 11:59 am, Blogger Michelle Styles said…

    Hooray for you!!!
    You are gonig to be wonderful.
    A mass write in/read in could be a wonderful idea.

    But I do love the slogan -- reading any time, any where, anything.

  • At 12:34 pm, Blogger Biddy said…

    WOOOO!! Go you!! And all the rest of the M&B writers in residence!

  • At 12:39 pm, Blogger Janet said…

    That's fantastic. What will you have to do?

  • At 1:32 pm, Blogger Trish said…

    You've officially been TAGGED on my blog... get to it ;)

  • At 2:40 pm, Blogger Natasha Oakley said…

    Oh darn it, Trish!

  • At 2:41 pm, Blogger Natasha Oakley said…

    Janet, it's all flexible. So far I've agreed to do four library events. One in July and three in September.

    Anyone got any great ideas?

  • At 2:46 pm, Blogger Natasha Oakley said…

    Oh and guess what I found out on the school run? Bedfordshire Central Library is planning a coffee shop! Have laptop, will travel.

  • At 1:24 pm, Blogger Ally Blake said…

    How lovely! You must head on down there to write a bit at least. you ought to be able to shove anyone off your favourite chair with the explanaiton of who you are ;).

    And love love love the ad. hilarious!



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