Michelle Morgan

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Last week I travelled down to London with my parents, to do a talk and book signing at the National Portrait Gallery.

When we arrived at the gallery theatre where I was to do my talk, there was already a small line of people.

The doors weren’t supposed to open until 1 pm but at 12.50pm a gentleman came in to ask if he could open the doors early.  

Apparently the line was stretching all the way across the large hall, down a flight of stairs and into the book shop, which was quite a way from the theatre.  

When the doors opened, all 150 seats were quickly taken and it was standing room only.

As I was sitting waiting to go on, I was delighted when a lady approached me.  

She said that she was on holiday from New Zealand and that she had been thrilled to discover I was speaking at the gallery.  

She told me that I was one of her favourite authors, and she said that she just had to meet me.  

A few minutes later it was time for the talk and I remember walking across the stage and the light being on me, and everyone was clapping and I made a little joke that perhaps it was too late for me to run away now.  

Everyone laughed and it was at this point that I knew that I was going to be all right.  

Thirty-five minutes went quickly and once I ended my talk, there was a huge round of applause, which made me so happy.  

Afterwards I was whisked off to the book shop for the signing.  

I don’t know how many books I signed, but it was a lot and it was a real thrill to meet so many people.

I had a brilliant day and all the nerves I went through before I walked on stage were all worth it.

If I could turn back time and live the day at the gallery over and over again, I really, truly would.