Book Launch

Thursday 6th September 2012

Today was the day I have been waiting for, for what seemed like aaaaages. My debut children's book, 'My Best Friend And Other Enemies' became officially out NOW in all good book shops.

(I am quite pleased the phrasing of that means I get to be passive aggressive to any book shops that don't stock it). All the good ones do. It's their loss.

To mark the occaision Nosy Crow helped me throw a party and my Mum made some homemade pizzas.

Talking to my friend about having a book launch, we realised that our main frame of reference for such a thing comes from Bridget Jones. I was willing try to re-create this atmosphere, though had a feeling Salman Rushdie wouldn't be coming. Again, his loss.

It was a great evening and now Nosy Crow have proof that the book is suitable for 8-80 year olds!

If you want to read my book without the nuisance of having to leave your house, you can also get 'My Best Friend And Other Enemies' online from Amazon, Foyles and Watersones. And you can read the first chapter for free here.

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PR Stunt

Monday 14th May 2012

My first children's book 'My Best Friend And Other Enemies' comes out in September, and soon I will face the tricky and competitive task of drumming up interest.

But luckily for me, my (real life) best friend, Kim, is a marketing genius. She has decided to let me rent out the lucrative advertising space on her only daughter - for free!

The back of the T-shirt says, 'My Best Friend And Other Enemies, by Aunty Catie, out September 6th 2012, Available to Pre-Order on Amazon now!'

So now I just need to get my little god daughter to casually walk around a few choice places, like the Blue Peter studios while they're live on air, and maybe some newspaper offices while they're writing the weekend supplements, and we're away!

If anyone thinks it's amoral to advertise on a toddler, all I can say is this: Hello? Publishing is a cut throat business. A cut throat business my friend.

My Best Friend And Other Enemies is out on 6th September and available to pre-order on Amazon now.

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Spoof Magazine

Friday 27th April 2012

I have my first visual gag for my Edinburgh show. Thanks to the super Alistair Lawrence (@Spaced1999AKA on twitter).

Imagine if men were treated by the media, the same way women are. You don't have to! I've done it for you. It's this here. 

Proper satire.

Now I just need another 59.30 minutes worth of empowering jokes about feminism.

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It's A Sign

Monday 6th February 2012

I went up to Norfolk at the weekend to see my friends and my little god daughter who is two and a half. This is the sign on the front of their local park. And it exemplifies why I will always love Norfolk.

That is how well Norfolk keeps the sign that proclaims it's best play area. It can't even do that properly. Kind of suggests the play area didn't have that much stiff competition from the rest of Norfolk. Especially during the weirdly specific years of 1991, 1998 and 2000.

Then it kind of dropped off the map a bit. People think showbusiness is cruel as it forgets people so quickly, but hey, the world of parks is a cut throat business. One minute you're the belle of the parks, the next, no one even keeps your sign looking nice. Oh how I bet that park longs for the halcion days of 1991, 1998 and 2000 respectively.

You might then think that this park might not be up to much, but actually it was pretty cool. It had loads of stuff, and all kinds of exciting part-slide-part-house-part-jungle-gym type contraptions, as well as the usual swings and roundabouts.

The sign just made it look like whatever the opposite of a humble brag is. (An over the top brag which is then forcibly humbled?)

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Plant a Tree

Friday 20th January 2012

My friend Christina does a lot of work for charidee. She doesn't call it that, she is normal. But she also makes helping various good causes part of her normal, every day life. Some of it is so easy that I thought I would help spread the word.

You know how sometimes you want to help charities but you don't want to spend money or start fannying around with a direct debit? Well now you can. You just have to click the below links, it doesn't cost you a penny, AND you still get the good karma. Pretty cool eh? Just doing it once day will make a difference.

Click here to help Japan.

Click here to plant a tree.

Click here to plant another tree.

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Sex Appeal

Thursday 19th January 2012

Bizarrely, the luckiest I have been this year was last Friday 13th when I performed at the Sex Appeal gig at the Bloomsbury Theatre.

This was the first time I had ever performed at the Bloomsbury and I was feeling extremely nervous. Not least because the rest of the line up was incredibly intimidating, comprising of comedy heavy weights such as Al Murray, Shappi Khorsandi, David Baddiel and more.

Walking onto the stage to face the 500 or so people was unreal, but luckily 'Dr Theatre' (or whatever we're calling that bit of you inside that really doesn't want you to mess up too much when it's actually important) kicked in, and I acted like a cool professional. If you don't count the bit where it felt like my leg was shaking, but I don't know if it was actually shaking, it just felt like it was.

I knew the gig would be OK when my first mini-punchline hit, and it turned out to be one of those beautiful, exhilarating  gigs where the audience is lovely. Also, because of the size of the venue, you get those amazing 'rolling laughs' that you only get at the bigger venues, where you have to actually slightly wait for the audience to stop laughing before you tell your next joke, or they won't be able to hear it. Most fun on stage ever. At least since Edinburgh. But maybe ever.

I don't know what the 15 year old me that loved comedy would make of this. The scale of her ambition was reached in 2009 when I did 5 minutes on a Thursday at The Comedy Store and took a picture of her name on the running order. She had no idea that these theatre gigs existed. She learnt everything from TV and hadn't even heard of the Edinburgh Festival until she was in her 20's. How embarrassing. I'm glad I'm not her, oh wait.

I've got off the point. The point is the gig was amazing and Brook are a great charity who give free and confidential advice about sex to young people. One of the reasons I love comedy is that it's a chance to talk about the dirty, naked truth about ourselves. It's important to talk about sex, and to have good information about it available. If you want to, I think you can still donate if you text 'BRCK00' then ï¿¡1, ï¿¡5, or ï¿¡10 to 70070.

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Back To The Future

Monday 26th December 2011

When I was a little kid I loved Back To The Future. I luuuurrrvved it. And that is why I look so ecstatic to receive the annual of it for my tenth Birthday.

I remember this day really clearly because at the time I thought I was awesome. (I didn't know about how dungarees aren't that awesome in those days) I was yet to get that memo. And several other fashion based memos come to think of it. Also, a lot of the common sense type memos seemed to pass me by as well. But my love for all things Back To The Future was pure.

When my boyfriend first came to my parents house and saw this picture of me, he jokingly lamented that he would never be able to make me as happy as I look in this picture.

But he decided he would like to have a good try anyway, and so for Christmas got me the Blu-ray box set. Then we decided to try to re-create the photo, because y'know, we are cool.

I still look pretty unashamedly happy about a Back To The Future based present. But I think my main acheivement in the intervening years is that I no longer own dungarees.

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We Did It!

Monday 10th October 2011

I ran a bloody half marathon! I can't believe it. It doesn't seem real, but it is because I am in agony. We raised loads of money for Scope and you can still donate on my Just Giving Page here.

Before we did it, I genuinely wasn't sure if I would be able to run for that long. I am not one of life's sporty achievers. Even more amazingly we did it in 2 hrs 16 minutes. I really thought it might take me 3 hours. Mile 9 onwards was Hell, but I was surprised at how euphoric I felt at the end.

My boyfriend and I ran together, keeping the same pace the whole way. We crossed the line holding hands, which was really fun and romantic, until the commentator shouted that my boyfriend had finished, disrupting our romantic moment. And then some people rushed over to take his picture, and I felt slightly in the way, even though I had just run a half Marathon, which was an amazing personal achievement.

The race itself had a lovely atmosphere, with lots of people round the edge shouting encouragement. One of my favourite bits was when another man raising money for Scope ran past us and shouted 'Yeah, go team Scope!' Not being sporty or religious I have never really experienced what it's like to be part of a team or something like that before. I guess now I have a bit more understanding of why religious people and sports fans sometimes turn to violence to protect their gangs.

I wore pink ear muffs because (a) my ears get cold (I told you I'm too sensitive for sporty things) and (b) the pink ones were the cheapest ones on Amazon, and it's not like I was ever going to look shit hot running a half Marathon anyway.

My boyfriend had joked that he wouldn't be seen with me in them, and that it looked like I was in fancy dress because they were so stupid. But I didn't care, my ears were worth it. And then when people shouted encouragement from the sides, a few people shouted 'Go Ear Muffs!' And someone shouted, 'I like your ear muffs!' Admittedly someone also shouted, 'Why is she wearing ear muffs?' Which my boyfriend was quite gleeful about.

But the positive affirmation and cheers of the crowd were really lovely and did help keep us going. Again, not being sporty at all, all the peppy, 'Yeah! You can do it! Keep going!' Felt kind of alien and almost cheesy to me. I have managed to cultivate quite a negative attitude, where I feel almost scathing of such overt positivity. But you can't really be negative and expect to excel at sporty things. It's a direct clash.

I'm going to get a comedy spotter to follow me around and go, 'yeah! Good job! You can do it! You're doing really well! Just keep going!' You never know, it might make all the difference.

And you can still sponsor me here. Please do. Scope are great, why not chuck them a fiver?

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Sponsor Me

Sunday 25th September 2011

Go on, you know you want to.

I'm running a half marathon to raise money for scope. That's 13.1 miles (I don't know why we need the point 1 either, but we do). The point is, it's FAR. And if you were feeling lovely, you could sponsor me here:

Scope are a great charity who are trying to get equal rights for people with disabilities. There is more information about them here. If everyone just chucked in a fiver it would raise loads and you wouldn't even miss it. That's a pint in London.

The admin from the Just Giving/Virgin Equivalent site keep sending me emails with suggestions of how to get more people involved. My favourite has been the one to throw a murder mystery weekend at my house and make people sponsor me to come.

I'm not specifically against that idea, it's definitely next on my list after rinsing relatives, spamming facebook friends and tweeting anyone who slows down to read my tweets on twitter.

Anyway, the point is Scope are great and please do chuck them a fiver on my Just Giving Page here.

Go on, you know you want to. All the cool* kids are doing it.

Thanks ever so much xxx

*in this instance 'cool' means 'generous of spirit'

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It's Over Now

Sunday 11th September 2011

The Edinburgh Festival has finished and I can't be sure it wasn't all a dream. It was a brilliant, stressful and fun experience, and I expect part of me is going to miss the nerve fuelled stomache cramps and heart attacks for at least an hour before my show every day.

Plus I got some nice reviews, five four star reviews in total, which is something I never expected at the beginning of the run. And you know -  what would you rather have? Dept and some nice reviews, or money in the bank and your body's fight or flight response still working normally? Exactly.

Before the end of the festival my big poster got re-graffitied, this time in a more positive way. You probably can't see unless you click on the picture, but under Catie Wilkins someone has written 'Is Fucking Excellent!!!' to defend my honour against the Scottish National Party's libel. You can tell they mean it because they've used three exclamation marks. Thanks to @GarryPlatt on Twitter for capturing it.

I don't remember the second picture being taken, but apparently I adamently insisted it was, while very drunk at about 5.30 in the morning, on route being walked home for my own drunken safety. But I kind of think it sort of sums up my Edinburgh experience:

You go up and put yourself out there, leaving you wide open and vulnerable to criticism/graffiti by people that don't like you. Then luckily you get some nice reviews as well, so you try and cling to them and your management stick them on your posters. Then you get really drunk and apparently insanely proud of yourself and insist someone takes a picture to remember it forever.

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