For a couple of years I had been helping out a friend who was running an art gallery. I helped get the gallery ready for Private Views (which mostly involved applying poly filler and scrubbing floors. I met a few famous people when I was scrubbing floors) and felt I knew quite a bit about it. I never waste anything in my life and so this experience had to go in a book.
There were a few other things that had gone on in my life that ended up in this book. One of them was a dog having puppies. Someone who’d bought one of our puppies went on to breed from her. There was a time when I was listening to my husband on the phone to this nice woman. Not hearing the whole conversation it seemed to me that she was going to be referring to my novel for advice on the birth. Extremely concerned I kept shouting at my husband ‘Shirley’s Dog Book!’
I think she must have got good advice because her puppies went on to be prize winning dogs.
Part of my research involved a wonderful trip to France. I went with a friend on an art history tour which made for a very jolly time.
This book also involved a trip to New York that sadly, was cut out of the final book. But the trip wasn’t wasted as it came in handy several books later. (A Perfect Proposal.)