Last Monday the speaker at WIJ was the most charismatic, clever, witty, erudite, fast-talking Mrs Moneypenny (Channel 4’s Superscrimpers). She spoke for well over an hour without a pause or an ‘um’, and had our full attention on what to do as ‘ambitious women’.
We screeched with laughter when she came up with true-life anecdotes, mostly of her family. I didn’t know she was also a stand-up comic and had just come back from the Edinburgh Festival. Somehow, I never think of a stand-up comic as writing a weekly column for the Financial Times. But she does.
There were about 60 of us in the audience and just one man, so not entirely sure how he slipped in. But what was incredible was a mountain of books she’d had one of the waiters lay out on the table and told us after the talk to help ourselves to one. The book Mrs Moneypenny’s Careers Advice for Ambitious Women was published last year at £9.99, so it was an incredibly generous gesture, and we all grabbed a copy.
Before the talk I chatted with the woman sitting next to me, and a ten-pound note (special discount on a one-to-one) flashed from her hand to mine when she bought a copy of my book Seller Beware: How Not To Sell Your Business that I ‘happened’ to have in my handbag, so that was a small bonus.
By the way, WIJ are a very welcoming group of women and you don’t actually have to be a journalist. So long as you’re a published writer they would love to have you on board. And because they’re all dealing with the media you might meet someone who proves to be a useful contact… Why not give them a try? .