With just days to go until Cosmopolitan's 9th Ultimate Women of the Year Awards with Baileys, there are certain things I have learnt (and certain things I never will)...
1. Just as you have the final running order of the evening sorted (and despite some celebs and their agents saying for months that they'd sell their firstborn to attend), a spanner will get thrown into the works. A cold? A dead pet? Their cat ate their ballgown? We've heard them all.
2. You can't fight the weather. Extreme conditions have meant celebrities being marooned in New York and LA when they should have been glammed up to the nines and quaffing cosmopolitans with me.
3. What to wear? Every year I vow to be more organised and plan ahead. I tell myself that no one will be looking at me as it's all about the winners. Then I remember I actually have to walk on stage to open the evening in shoes that I've tried to crunch my feet into, ugly-sister style; that despite wearing double Spanx I have to breathe and go to the loo - and if I don't get it sorted I'll look at the photos and want to cry.
4. That the day before, the Cosmo office will smell of broken biscuits. Yes, that tell-tale aroma of fake tan. And in front of my eyes the team will turn a golden brown like an oven full of cupcakes waiting to be iced. (Or possibly as orange as a tribe of Oompah Loompas.)
5. Nothing tastes as good as the drink I raise to my lips having sat down from my last trip on stage to present the award for Editor's Choice.
6. Only wear waterproof mascara. I always have a little cry. It could be feeling the love in the room for all our winners. It could be as a result of an amazing acceptance speech relating to one of our extraordinary real-life stories. But the night's not complete without that pricking of my eyes.
7. I'll get a massive girl crush. From Kim Cattrall and Debbie Harry to This Is England's Vicky McClure and Nicole Scherzinger... there is always someone who stands out and who I'd love to be my BFF.
8. Name blindness will strike. Sadly it is not like The Devil Wears Prada, with an aide by my side prompting me when my memory is no friend. By the end of the night, surrounded by stars, winners, clients, PRs and friends, I'd be hard pushed to get my sons' names right if they walked up to me.
9. Don't serve cheese. It looks amazing, everybody loves it but shall we say it makes its presence felt if left on the table.10. Have emergency back-up lighting. One year the stage lights failed and we were trying to pick out the celebs with a single spotlight like something out of a war film and pretending it was a deliberate special effect. I think everyone believed me.Suggest a correction